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Monsoon turns `normal'

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Vinson Kurian

Thiruvananthapuram, Sept. 10

A burst of monsoon activity in North India during the week ending September 6 and an eastward-bound migrating rain belt in the south helped all-India area weighted rainfall figures match levels with the seasonal normal.

The actual rainfall for the season as on date (June 1-September 6) was 756.0 mm against a normal of 758.6 mm, according to the India Meteorological Department. Seven met sub-divisions recorded `excess' rainfall while 18 others fell in the `normal' category.

FIRST TIME

It is for the first time that recorded seasonal rainfall has measured up with the normal, after the monsoon rolled to a start six says ahead of schedule this year. The seasonal rainfall was in deficit to the tune of 2 per cent until only the week ending last.

The reversal in fortunes has come about largely on the back of a sudden spurt of rain activity, week-on-week, in the met sub-divisions of Jammu and Kashmir; west Madhya Pradesh; Punjab; and Tamil Nadu and Pondicherry.

CLOUD BURST

A prevailing monsoon `low' curling in west-northwest from the Bay of Bengal had set up an interaction with a passing western disturbance to generate cloudburst-like conditions in some areas of North India. Jammu and Kashmir had suffered the brunt with a rain surplus of 581 per cent during the week.

Punjab (+169 per cent) and west Madhya Pradesh (147 per cent) followed suit. Other notable weekly surpluses were in Haryana and Delhi (+65 per cent); east Rajasthan (+41 per cent) and west Uttar Pradesh (+39 per cent) and Tamil Nadu (+138 per cent).

STILL ON

Fairly widespread rains continued to lash the north eastern States, sub-Himalayan West Bengal, Sikkim, Tamil Nadu, Pondicherry, Kerala, coastal Karnataka, Lakshadweep and the Andaman and Nicobar Islands during the last 24 hours.

The enhanced rainfall activity is likely to continue over the next three days as well, said a forecast from the National Centre for Medium range Weather Forecasting (NCMRWF).

Model predictions continued to suggest that another cyclonic circulation is expected to form over west-central Bay of Bengal around Monday. This may descend subsequently to set up a `low' by Tuesday.

On the other hand, conditions may build up for withdrawal of monsoon from extreme west Rajasthan from Monday onwards.

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