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Farmers asked to defer sowing till next spell of rains

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MONSOON LULL

Vinson Kurian

Thiruvananthapuram, June 19

Last week's advisory to farmers in the rain-deficit north, central and west of the country to defer sowing of kharif crops has been retained with the lull in the monsoon continuing.

An update by the National Centre for Medium Range Weather Forecasting (NCMRWF) said monsoon was not likely to revive in these regions during the next seven days at least. Farmers in these areas where deficient to scanty rains have occurred so far have been advised to defer sowing until the next spell of rains.

But those in the southern as well as the north-eastern parts, which recorded normal or excess rainfall, could continue with the sowing operations. In the Northwest, farmers have been told to raise paddy nursery. Given the prevailing hot weather condition, sufficient water should be kept standing in the nursery to avoid iron deficiency.

EXCEPTIONS

Significantly, almost all meteorological subdivisions of the country reported scanty or deficient (-19 per cent to - 59 per cent) rainfall during the week ending June 14. Bihar and the Northeast, which received normal and excess rainfall, were the only exceptions.

Speaking to

Business Line

on Monday, Mr J.V. Singh of the NCMRWF said the monsoon ensemble has started showing signs of getting organised after pulling in different directions during the past 24-36 hours. The east to west shear zone of monsoon turbulence was coming back to life at a height of three km above sea level.

According to Mr K. Santhosh, Director, Met Office, easterlies in the upper levels were now clocking up to 70 knots over the Thiruvananthapuram latitude. This was a good sign as far as the revival prospects are concerned.

NCMRWF projections clearly saw a cyclonic circulation developing over west-central Bay of Bengal where sea surface temperatures are reaching the optimum levels. This circulation is expected to help drag the east-west shear zone and the upper level easterlies to the north to set up what are ideal monsoon conditions.

Under these circumstances, the reviving monsoon is projected to advance into the peninsula as well as parts of the northeast by the weekend, Mr Singh said. Conditions are favourable for the onset of rains in the peninsular tip within the next 48 hours.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated June 20, 2006)
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