First time after 1961, monsoon has covered both Mumbai and Delhi on the same day while maximum parts of the country are also covered despite delayed onset and stalled progress. As predicted, it may cover the entire country 10 days earlier than its normal schedule of July 8.

“The southwest monsoon has further advanced into remaining parts of Maharashtra, including Mumbai, Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh, Delhi, some parts of Gujarat, Rajasthan, and Haryana, remaining parts of Uttarakhand and most parts of Himachal Pradesh and some more parts of Jammu, Kashmir, and Ladakh, on June 25,” India Meteorological Department (IMD) said in a statement.

Conditions are favourable for further advance of monsoon into more parts of Gujarat, Rajasthan, Haryana, Punjab and remaining parts of Jammu and Kashmir during the next two days, it said. The Northern Limit of Monsoon (NLM) now passes through Veraval, Baroda, Udaipur, Narnaul, Ambala, and Katra.

On June 21, 1961, the monsoon covered the entire country on the same day, a senior IMD scientist said. Normally, monsoon onset takes place in Kerala on June 1 and covers the entire country by July 8.

This year, when the monsoon hit Kerala on June 8, the pan-India rainfall deficit was 60 per cent. As monsoon was almost stalled between June 11 and June 22, as many as 21 States were deficient until June 20.

However, with the revival of monsoon and widespread rains in many parts of the country, the deficit has now narrowed to 28 per cent, though a number of rainfall-deficient States remain the same.

Skymet’s prediction

Private weather forecaster, Skymet, in April, had predicted June rainfall to be 99 per cent of the long-period average of 165.3 mm. However, the impact of Cyclone Biparjoy could not be factored in at that time as such predictions are announced 7-15 days before the event.

On the other hand, IMD’s forecast had ‘below normal’ rainfall for June over most parts of the country. However, it also had said some areas of south peninsular India, north-west India, extreme north India, and some isolated pockets of north-east India might have ‘above normal’ rainfall in June.

Until June 25, the east and north-east meteorological subdivisions, comprising West Bengal, Bihar, Jharkhand, and other NE States have received 21 per cent deficit rainfall, though Assam, Meghalaya, and Sikkim have surplus rain.

North-west region

Similarly, the north-west region has recorded 33 per cent surplus rainfall in which Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand and Jammu and Kashmir have ‘below normal’ rainfall. Central India is 45 per cent deficit though Gujarat, the only state within the region, has recorded 82 per cent above normal precipitation.

The south peninsula is 49 per cent deficient, but Tamil Nadu has received 12 per cent surplus rainfall. Puducherry and Andaman and Nicobar are other areas where IMD data showed excess rainfall.

Though June is equally important for sowing to take off all across the country, July is most crucial as most of the planting is covered during this period.

Skymet has predicted July rainfall to be ‘below normal’, quantitatively 95 per cent of LPA, whereas IMD is likely to predict the July outlook this week. Overall kharif sowing was down 4.5 per cent until June 23, the agriculture ministry said last Friday.