Vinson Kurian

Thiruvananthapuram, Sept. 28

SOUTHWEST monsoon was declared as having exited west Rajasthan and parts of northwest India on Wednesday even as the pre-existing cyclonic circulation over north-central Bay of Bengal gained in strength.

True to predictions by the National Centre for Medium Range Weather Forecasting (NCMRWF), monsoon withdrew from entire west Rajasthan and parts of Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Punjab, Haryana, east Rajasthan, Gujarat and Saurashtra and Kutch on Wednesday.

Further retreat of associated air mass from more parts of northwest India is likely in the coming days, the NCMRWF said in its update. Meanwhile, model predictions suggested that the cyclonic circulation over the Bay is expected to grow in intensity and vertical extent, possibly leading to its getting organised as a low-pressure area by Friday.

Speaking to Business Line, Dr K.J. Ramesh, scientist at the NCMRWF, said monsoon easterlies would also get strengthened in the process. Associated cloud bands are expected to bring about rainfall over coastal regions of Andhra Pradesh, Orissa and Gangetic West Bengal.

There was nothing at this point of time to suggest that Tropical Storm Damrey, which made a landfall over Indochina the other day, may have precipitated the denouement. The cyclonic circulation had been factored in as early as two days ago and had been kept under watch as it grew organically over the period.

The other westward-moving Pacific system, Typhoon Logwang, had strengthened to a Category-4 storm but was tracking a west-northwest course on Wednesday as well. Located to southeast of Okinawa, the system was headed to make a landfall on the Chinese coast.

During the last 24 hours, scattered rainfall occurred over Andaman and Nicobar Islands, the Northeastern States and coastal areas of Orissa, Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu. Significant rainfall was recorded at Karaikal (8 cm), Gopalpur (4 cm) and Nellore (3 cm).

In region-wise forecasts for the next 4-5 days, the NCMRWF said most parts of northwest, north and central India are likely to experience dry weather, with monsoon progressively exiting from parts of these areas. Isolated rains are expected over the hilly areas of for the next 24 hours. Otherwise, mainly dry weather may prevail over the North and Northwest.

Coastal regions of Orissa and Gangetic West Bengal are likely to experience scattered to fairly widespread rainfall. Scattered rains are also likely over the Northeastern States and sub-Himalayan West Bengal. Isolated rain is likely over rest of the areas of the region for the 24-48 hours, following which dry weather will come to prevail.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated September 29, 2005)
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