New Delhi: India has so far received 4% less rainfall than the long period average (LPA) since the onset of the monsoon in June, according to the India Meteorological Department (IMD). The deficit is not a cause for concern as Kharif sowing is almost complete in 96% of the seasonal area.
Northwest and central India have both received 2% and 3% more rain than the 50-year average, while the southern peninsula has recorded a deficit of 11%. The deficit is the highest in the eastern and northeastern regions at 13%.
India mostly remained dry during last week, with many areas receiving scanty rainfall. Heavy rains lashed isolated parts of Bihar, Meghalaya, Assam and Arunachal Pradesh.
“There is not much improvement in rainfall apart from the east and northeastern regions. The rice belt of the country, which includes Bihar, Jharkhand, Odisha and West Bengal will receive rainfall in the coming week. Regions of the north east India—Assam, Meghalaya and Nagaland, Manipur and Tripura—which have been facing a deficit till date, will receive modest showers in the next 4-5 days,” said N. Chattopadhyay, deputy director general at the agricultural meteorology division of IMD.
According to IMD, subdivisions of the peninsular region, particularly coastal Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Rayalseema, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Kerala, will receive rain from 12 September. Light rainfall is also expected over north west India from the same date.
“Maharashtra will be dry in the coming 4-5 days. Farmers are advised to follow protective irrigation in their fields,” added Chattopadhyay.
Rainfall has been normal to excess in 87% of the country so far, while 13% is still in deficit. The regions with a deficit include Kerala, coastal Karnataka, Gujarat, Dadra and Nagar Haveli, Daman, Punjab, Himachal Pradesh, Assam, Meghalaya, Nagaland, Manipur, Tripura and Mizoram.
“Weather conditions have started showing symptoms of withdrawal of the South West Monsoon from the western parts of the country,” according to private weather forecaster Skymet Weather Services Pvt. Ltd.
“No rains have occurred over the Western parts of Rajasthan for last 5 days. But still we can’t say that the withdrawal of the south west monsoon has started. This is because south westerly winds from Arabian Sea are moving over Rajasthan and it will take at least 8-10 days for these wind directions to change. Until then the moisture level will remain over Rajasthan,” said Mahesh Palawat, chief meteorologist at Skymet.