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Monsoon through the lens

| Updated on August 19, 2021

A curation of pictures of the great Indian monsoon that sets off a series of events across the country

“To know India and her people, one has to know the monsoon. It is not enough to read about it in books, or see it on the cinema screen, or hear someone talk about it. It has to be a personal experience because nothing short of living through it can fully convey all it means to a people for whom it is not only the source of life, but also their most exciting impact with nature.” — Khushwant Singh

This year the monsoon season was interrupted in its onset by two severe cyclonic storms Yaas and Tauktae that hit the Andaman Sea and Bay of Bengal, playing havoc with the regular schedule of rains. While the monsoon was on time (June 3), July was a month of wait for those looking forward to it in North India, even as states in eastern India were inundated with excess rains. A delayed monsoon meant the sowing of pokkali rice, a heritage salt-tolerant paddy variety from Kerala, got pushed further. The pokkali variety has gathered attention from climate scientists as a climate change resistant crop, and now flourishes in the rice paddies of coastal Alappuzha, Ernakulam and Thrissur districts of Kerala, hand-in-hand with prawn farming.

The rains, when they advanced, brought massive landslides in the Himalayan states of Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh and UT of Jammu and Kashmir. Even as the monsoon swept the desert state of Rajasthan, Delhi remained largely dry. It made massive picturesque clouds across the skyline, bringing hope somewhere, despair elsewhere.

Published on August 19, 2021

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