Monsoon worries at rest: more rain expected across India
18 July 2014
It never rains but it pours, as the old English adage goes. After an unduly slow start, the south-west monsoon has covered the entire country and is expected to intensify from Sunday, according to the latest data from the India Meteorological Department.
The revival of monsoon rains should help speed up sowing of vital summer crops such as rice, corn, soybean and cotton.
The data should come as a relief to the new government, which had every reason to fear the first serious drought in five years just when it has come to power.
The arrival of the monsoon rains was delayed by at least six days. Last year, monsoon rains had covered the country almost a month ahead of schedule, helping grain output hit a record level.
Rains are vital to India's farm sector, which accounts for about 14 per cent of the country's nearly $2 trillion economy. Two-thirds of its 1.2 billion people live in rural areas.
On Thursday, the weather bureau said the Monsoon has run up the outer areas of Saurashtra, Kutch, Gujarat and west Rajasthan – some of the more arid farming areas of the country.
More rains coming
More rain is on the way in view of the formation the next 'low' over northwest Bay of Bengal, thanks to the northwest Pacific/South China Sea Typhoon Rammasun.
International models signal that the Bay of Bengal would witness more than one low-pressure area before the end of July.
In more good news, the 'low' expected off the Odisha coast on Sunday would be followed by another one a little to the south exactly a week later on 27 July, according to the IMD.
Further, another a 'low' is building over north-west Madhya Pradesh and is working its way up.
A low pressure system, especially in coastal areas, almost automatically leads to heavy monsoon cloud formation.
Heavy to very heavy rain continues to lash central India and the west coast, with Bhira (21 cm) and Mahabaleshwar (17cm) recording the highest recorded overnight on Thursday morning.
Now with its monsoon worries almost past, it is up to the government to bring down the soaring prices of staple vegetables, which is hurting the average Indian while pulling economic indices down.