The 24 hours ending on Thursday morning produced some of the heaviest rainfall likely ever recorded at assorted places over Peninsular India, led by a tremendous 71 cm over Vaibhavwadi (Sindhudurg district, Maharashtra); 58 cm at Avalanchi (Nigiris, Tamil Nadu); 49 cm at Bhagamandala (Kodagu) and 39 cm at Kottigehara (Chikkamagaluru, both Karnataka). 

Following close on the trail (in cm) were G Bazar, Koyna and Mumbai (Colaba)-33 each; Uran-32; Roha-30; Bhira-29; Palghar-26; Shriwardhan-24; Radhanagri and Mandangarh-23; each; Matheran-21; Mahabaleshwar -19; Gondia and Mumbai (Santacruz)-15 each; Harnai-14; Kolhapur, Hoshangabad-11 each; Alibagh and Darjeeling-10 across the rest of the country.

Well-marked low weakens

 The India Meteorological Department (IMD) said heavy to very heavy overnight rainfall with extremely falls fell over Konkan & Goa; Madhya Maharashtra; Coastal and South Interior Karnataka; Tamil Nadu; and Puducherry. It was heavy to very heavy over East Rajasthan, Vidarbha, hills of West Bengal and Sikkim and heavy over Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Odisha, Gujarat state and North Interior Karnataka.

 This was after Wednesday’s well-marked area weakened a round and had wheeled over to South-West Madhya Pradesh by Thursday evening from its overnight perch over the Bay of Bengal. It had acted in unison with the cyclonic circulation over South Gujarat (since shifted to North Konkan), exchanging oodles of moisture and precipitating in torrents. 

The Western Ghats received the marauding flows packed with moisture from the Arabian Sea on its chin, drove it up against its heights, the impact of which cooled, condensed and precipitated it as unrelenting monsoon torrents rain to the accompaniment of unprecedented strong winds at many places. Signs of active to vigorous monsoon conditions were written all over the proceedings.

Fresh low throws challenge

In its outlook for the next few days, the IMD said widespread rainfall with isolated/scattered heavy to very heavy falls may continue over Gujarat state, Konkan and Goa and Madhya Maharashtra on Friday before losing intensity. Meanwhile, isolated heavy to very heavy falls is likely over Tamil Nadu, Kerala and South Interior and Coastal Karnataka during next 4-5 days. 

Adding to the melee is a fresh low likely developing over West-Central and adjoining North Bay (off Andhra Pradesh and Odisha) by Sunday. This would once again drive up rain over East and Central India with fairly widespread to widespread rainfall with isolated heavy to very heavy falls over Odisha, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh and Vidarbha for at least three days.

The Kerala State Disaster Management Authority has issued a series of red and orange alerts for several districts in the state for the next three to four days given that south-westerly flows may strengthen with the formation of the new low in Bay. Isolated extremely heavy falls have been forecast until Sunday and over the Ghat areas of neighbouring Tamil Nadu until Saturday.