The southwest monsoon could hit Kerala, entry point of the system into Indian mainland, on June 1 or 2. The normal date for onset over Kerala is June 1.

The countdown to the four-month southwest monsoon season has begun. India Meteorological Department (IMD) on Wednesday announced that conditions are becoming favourable for the system to set in over Kerala in the next three to four days.

In other words, the system could hit Kerala, entry point of the system into the Indian mainland, on June 1 or 2. The normal date for onset over Kerala is June 1.

If the prediction comes true, it will be in keeping with a forecast made by the department earlier this month. The prediction made on May 15 was for an onset on June 3 with a model error of plus or minus four days.

The department has been issuing forecast for the onset over Kerala since 2005 and it has been almost on the mark, at least within the model error range of plus or minus four days.

Last year, it predicted an onset on June 1, and the actual event occurred four days later on June 5. In 2011, its prediction was for May 31 and the onset took place two days earlier on May 29. IMD, in its long range forecast for the season issued on April 26, predicted that it would be a normal monsoon this year, with a rainfall of 98 per cent of the long period average of 89 cm with a model error of plus or minus 5 per cent.

More In: National | News