New Delhi: India’s weather office said it is yet to see any signs of withdrawal of the southwest monsoon that usually starts receding on 1 September.

A forecast by the Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology says that a withdrawal can be expected after 20 September.

The delayed withdrawal could mean a wet September, and also a normal monsoon. Till 10 September, the monsoon was 11% deficient, and some parts of the country are experiencing drought-like conditions.

Weekly rainfall in the week that started 8 September was 64% above average, the Met said. That makes it the wettest week of the year.

Heavy rainfall led to devastating floods in Jammu and Kashmir at the start of week, continuous downpour in Narmada district in Gujarat led to flood warnings in Vadodara, leading to mass evacuation.

While rain-starved states such as Punjab, Haryana and Rajasthan received adequate rainfall in the past week, Uttar Pradesh continued to be deprived of rainfall. Bihar, the northeastern states and Tamil Nadu also received deficient rainfall.

Monsoon rainfall is crucial for India where more than half of the cultivated land is dependent on rainfall for irrigation. A late onset led to late sowing of seeds for many kharif crops, but renewed showers since August end have helped standing crops, according to agri-meteorologists.

In the coming week, Gujarat is expected to receive more thundershowers, and Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh can expect heavy showers as well.

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