Monsoon deficit goes down to 37%

India’s monsoon rainfall deficit has improved to 37% after a deficit of 43% until last week. However, three-fourths of India’s 36 meteorological divisions continue to post deficient rains, according to an update by the India Meteorological Department (IMD) on Monday. Moreover, several parts of India that are struck by water shortages continue to reel under such deficits.

According to the IMD’s Monday update, the southwest monsoon “further advanced” into parts of central Arabian Sea, Konkan, most parts of Madhya Maharashtra, remaining parts of Marathwada and Vidarbha, some regions of Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand. It had reached Alibagh on the outskirts of Mumbai, and is expected to enter the city in a day or two, Dr. K.J. Ramesh, Director General, IMD, told The Hindu. Normally, the monsoon reaches Mumbai on June 10.

‘No bearing’

“June is the month when the monsoon is advancing and establishing itself over the country. A rain shortage now has no bearing on the overall performance of the monsoon,” Dr. Ramesh said.

The IMD has forecast a ‘normal’ monsoon for 2019. This means India is expected to get 96% of the 89 cm rainfall average between June and September. Currently, the eastern branch of the monsoon that enters mainland India via the Bay of Bengal is performing better than the branch that advances northward, along India’s western coast, from Kerala.

Lulls, pulses

Several parts of northeastern India and even parts of eastern Uttar Pradesh have received monsoon rains thanks to a low pressure system in the Bay of Bengal. A similar rain-bearing pulse is responsible for the stalled monsoon’s movement into Maharashtra and parts of Madhya Pradesh, said Dr. Ramesh. There would, however, be a lull, and a major pulse is expected to begin at the Bay of Bengal from July 1, he added.

As The Hindu reported on Sunday, the monsoon deficit had depleted reservoirs and delayed the sowing of summer foodgrain crops. According to the Central Water Commission (CWC), 80% of the country’s 91 major reservoirs have below-normal storage and 11 reservoirs have no water at all.

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Printable version | Nov 21, 2020 4:54:07 PM |

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