The northeast monsoon season is drawing to a close with rainfall decreasing over most parts of south India, according to the latest forecast.

The three-month-long period starting October is the chief rainfall season for Tamil Nadu, coastal Andhra Pradesh, Rayalseema, Kerala and south-interior Karnataka, and contributes towards production of rabi crops.

Tamil Nadu, which falls under the rain-shadow region during the southwest monsoon, receives nearly 48% of its annual rainfall during this period. While there is still a week to go for the season to end, meteorologists suggest that major monsoon activity is unlikely, except for scattered rain and thunderstorms over parts of Tamil Nadu and Karnataka around 25 December.

“So far, the rainfall has been excess in Karnataka (71%), Telangana (41%) and Kerala (28%), while it remains deficient to the tune of 7% in Andhra Pradesh. In Tamil Nadu also, it is surplus by a small percentage of 3%," said Mahesh Palawat, chief meteorologist at Skymet, a private weather forecasting agency.

Last year, the northeast monsoon had ended with deficit rains over all five sub-divisions of south India, except for Kerala, where the rains were normal. The deficiency was over 60% for Rayalseema, which witnessed poor rains even during the southwest monsoon.

However, this year, the northeast monsoon arrived early with the retreat of the southwest monsoon on 16 October and remained quite active until mid-November. Rainfall activity however began to reduce thereafter and most parts of south India remained dry in the second half.

“There have not been any significant weather systems in Bay of Bengal in December, so a revival of north-east monsoon is unlikely," said Palawat.

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