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NEW DELHI : The Indian metrological Department (IMD) has predicted that the South west Monsoon winds are likely to enter the Indian peninsula through Kerala by 27 May this year. 

Monsoon is likely to make early onset over Andaman and Nicobar Islands by 15 May, the weather office said.

The early arrival of the Indian Monsoon is very likely to boost the agricultural productivity of the country. More than half of the country's fields are still dependent on the annual monsoon season in India. 

The normal onset date for monsoon over Kerala is 1 June. The news comes as a boon for large agri-based economy that is India. However, the forecast has a margin of error of four days.

“This year, the onset of southwest monsoon over Kerala is likely to be earlier than the normal date of onset. The monsoon onset over Kerala is likely to be on May 27 with a model error of four days," India Meteorological Department (IMD) said.

The prediction of early monsoon comes at a time when the weather department has also issued orange alert due to oncoming severe heatwave conditions for the northern part of the country.  The north-west of India has been experiencing extremely high maximum temperatures in the past month. 

Meanwhile, timely monsoon rains are critical for India’s farm output and economic growth at a time when the country is battling soaring food prices. The war in Ukraine has further pushed up world food costs to a record. India’s farm sector is the main source of livelihood for about 60% of its population and accounts for 18% of the economy.  

The monsoon is likely to be normal for a fourth year. The meteorological department forecast in April that annual rainfall during the four-month season would be 99% of the long-term average of 87 centimeters.

Last year’s monsoon rains were 99% of the long-term average, according to the weather department. It was 9% higher than normal in 2020 and 10% more than the average in 2019. Rains helped to boost India’s food grain production to a record in 2021-22.

Showers during the rainy season not only water fields directly, but fill reservoirs that help irrigate winter-sown crops. A good monsoon boosts crop output, while poor rains lead to drinking water shortages, lower harvests and higher imports of some commodities. India is the second-biggest grower of wheat, rice, sugar and cotton, and the largest buyer of palm, soybean and sunflower oils.

 

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