Iranian Ambassador to India Ali Chegeni said that India’s development work had been “very slow”, and that trade to Afghanistan was “much lower” than it should be, India’s The Hindu reported.
He also said that in view of the delay over India’s plans to build a railway line connecting Chabahar port to the Afghan border at Zahedan, the Iranian government had decided to complete the railroad through its own resources by 2021.
In addition, Iran is now discussing an LNG pipeline to China along the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), as India is not expected to retain its prior interest in LNG imports from Iran.
“If India wants energy security, it should prefer Iran as a dependable supplier,” Chegeni said.
“We love the Indian people. But we cannot force somebody to love us. The Government of India has to decide according to its national interest. Just as the Chinese have,” he added.
Iran, India and Afghanistan had signed a trilateral agreement, to develop Chabahar, in May 2016 during Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Afghan President Ashraf Ghani’s visits to Tehran.