In a historic step, the India Ports Global Limited company formally took over the operations at Shahid Beheshti port at Chabahar, Iran on 24th December 2018. This is the outcome of years of hard work and is matter of huge pride for the nation. Chabahar port is strategically very important for India as it gives them access to Afghanistan and central Asia using Iran as a route. Also it facilitates India’s role in Afghanistan’s development through infrastructure and education projects.
It gives India’s bilateral ties with Iran, a major oil supplier and potential trade market for India, a big fillip. India has helped develop the Shahid Beheshti port with these outcomes in mind, and has been given the contract to manage it for 18 months. It will be important to operationalise the port quickly and smoothen the route to Afghanistan. The land route through Pakistan is unpredictable and cannot be trusted. Pakistan will continue to create hurdle for India and therefore Chabahar port will play huge strategic role for the country. Also India should learn a lesson from the success of this project and spread its influence in the strategically important countries without any making noise. India and Iran silently worked together to develop this port. Due to growing Chinese influence in recent years India has lost influence over countries like Sri Lanka, Nepal, Maldives etc. The success of Chabahar port has shown a path and hopefully the government of India will follow the similar path to win heart of other friendly countries.