Fresh `low' forecast in Bay

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Renewed rainfall likely in Orissa, West Bengal

Vinson Kurian

Thiruvananthapuram, Aug 15

The tide has turned upside down in the Bay of Bengal with an upper air cyclonic circulation, hovering in the region for sometime now and thought to be spending itself out, suddenly gaining depth to set the ground for the next `low'.

According to forecasts by both India Meteorological Department (IMD) and the National Centre for Medium Range Weather Forecasting (NCMRWF), the `low' would materialise as early as within the next 24 hours, beating the most optimistic predictions by a day.

Fast Paced

Unlike its predecessors, the brewing system is seen as moving fast in the familiar west-northwest trajectory, said Mr J.V. Singh of NCMRWF.

As a result, the ensuing rain session could get less entrenched in the region.

Starting Tuesday night, a burst of renewed rain will bear down on Orissa and Gangetic West Bengal culminating in heavy to very heavy falls during the next 48 hours.

Subsequently, the rain belt is likely to shift to Chhattisgarh and East Madhya Pradesh.

Successor `Low'

Given the emerging scenario, the outlook for monsoon to weaken after August 20 (erroneously given as September 20 on Tuesday) may most probably be subjected to a review.

Forecasters are not ruling out the possibility of yet another `low' forming early next week (around August 22/23).

Model predictions by the European Centre for Medium-Range Forecasts (ECMWF) have also indicated a circulation converging in the region by that time.

The fact that the Western Pacific continues to be active, letting off remnants from raging weather systems into the Bay, supports this outlook.

It is also to be expected that the Bay would have warmed up sufficiently given the gap of five to six days after passage of the last system over land.

A clearer picture would emerge over the next few days, Mr Singh said.

Wet Session

In its update on Tuesday, the NCMRWF said a well-marked `low' lay over northwest Madhya Pradesh and adjoining east Rajasthan. Under its influence, widespread rainfall with heavy to very heavy falls are likely at a few places with isolated extremely heavy falls over southwest Madhya Pradesh, southeast Rajasthan and north Gujarat during the next 2-3 days. Fairly widespread rainfall with isolated heavy to very heavy falls are also likely over northwest Madhya Pradesh, Saurashtra, Kutch, south Gujarat, Konkan, Goa (including Mumbai) and north Madhya Maharashtra. Overall, rainfall over these regions is likely to reduce after two days. Monsoon is likely to remain active over central and peninsular India during the next 4-5 days.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated August 16, 2006)
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