The monsoon has finally hit Kerala—four days before the normal arrival date of 1 June. The timing of the monsoon season is crucial for India’s 234 million farmers and their crops of rice, soyabean, peanuts and lentils. Farm output accounts for about a fifth of the nation’s $854 billion (Rs35 trillion) economy.
However, India Meteorological Department (IMD) spokesperson B.P. Yadav, emphasized that the timing of the monsoon is unrelated to the quantity of expected rainfall. Last month, IMD forecast the summer monsoon to be 95% of the normal—49-year-average.
An early onset over Kerala doesn’t mean early showers over other parts of the country, Yadav added. The summer monsoon usually covers the entire country by 15 July. Last year, the monsoon set over Kerala on 26 May—six days earlier than normal, and the country registered 99% of the normal rainfall, when IMD predicted it to be 93%.