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Rain deficit down to 2%

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But at the cost spread

Vinson Kurian

Thiruvananthapuram, Aug. 10

The rainfall deficit for the country as a whole for the season up till August 9 has come down to 2 per cent but at the cost of even spread, especially with the spanking Central India has received over the last three weeks.

The zonal distribution of rainfall provides the best evidence: While Central India received surplus rainfall of 18 per cent during the season, Northwest, South Peninsular and Northeast India totted up deficit figures respectively of 2 per cent, 9 per cent and 25 per cent.

This shows that Central India is making up for the deficit elsewhere, based on simple arithmetic.

But the healthier rain distribution until the second week of July has been compromised with, said Dr Akhilesh Gupta of the Department of Science and Technology.

For instance, the week ending August 9 saw Central India recording surplus rainfall of 28 per cent, an unusually high figure for the time and place.

This was only to be expected with `low' after `low' taking a west-northwest course to pour their contents over a familiar swathe from Orissa to Gujarat.

And the trend continued to the day when, for the third time during the season, a `low' in the Bay of Bengal beat forecasts to form at least a day in advance in yet another sign of the monsoon peaking to the misery of the flood-ravaged peninsular states.

Fresh `low'

The National Centre for Medium Range Weather Forecasting (NCMRWF) said that the `low' has formed over the North Bay off the Orissa-West Bengal coast on Thursday. The `low' will stagnate over the waters for one or two days, and intensify into a depression.

Since almost 50 per cent of the associated moisture is concentrated over the land, rain will start pounding North Coastal Andhra Pradesh, Coastal Orissa and Chhattisgarh `very soon.'

To move west

This session will sustain over the next 48 hours, following which the system will cross land and propagating west to rain it over East Madhya Pradesh, Telengana, Madhya Maharashtra and Vidarbha.

It will culminate in a swamping of North Konkan and Gujarat by August 15/16 (Tuesday/Wednesday next).

Dr Gupta feared that Maharashtra and Gujarat, which are still reeling from flooding from the preceding weather system, would pose major worry for relief and rehabilitation workers. These two states will receive a fresh spell of rains as early as from Sunday.

Some of the heaviest rain would be witnessed during a five-day period from Sunday (August 13-17). Orissa, Chhattisgarh and Andhra Pradesh would also be in the severely affected list.

Meanwhile, the westerly monsoon jet, which had shifted south in anticipation of the formation of the `low', will now move back to the north.

This will once again clear up skies over Kerala, Coastal Karnataka and some parts of Tamil Nadu.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated August 11, 2006)
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