With the southwest monsoon entering Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, coastal Andhra Pradesh, Odisha, west Bengal, Jharkhand and Bihar on Monday, cumulative rainfall deficiency so far has been reduced to 5% from 25% reported on June 16.
The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has predicted an intense spell of rainfall along the west coast in the next five days.
“Thunderstorm activity accompanied by heavy showers is likely to continue over north, central and east India during the next two days,” IMD said in a statement.
During June 1-20, the cumulative average monsoon rainfall was 88.1 mm, which was 5% less than the normal volume of 92.8 mm. During June 1-16, the cumulative rainfall was 51.3 mm, which was 25% less than the normal volume of 68.1 mm.
Only the east and northeast region of the country has received 46% more monsoon rainfall than normal volume so far. Cumulative deficiency in rain over the southern peninsula was reported at 21%. Northwest India and central India have rainfall deficiency of 24% and 41%, respectively.
“Monsoon’s active phase has started since June 17, we are expecting a normal rainfall this month,” M Ravichandran, secretary, ministry of earth sciences, told FE. IMD will provide a monsoon forecast for July on June 30.
Officials said that rainfall intensity in July is crucial for boosting kharif crops sowing pace.
On May 31, the IMD said monsoon rains this year will be more than what it had forecast in April at 103% of the benchmark long-period average (LPA), with 81% chance of rainfall being either “normal” or above.
The rains will also be well-distributed spatially across the four broad regions and most parts of the country, the agency had said. In its forecast for June, the IMD has predicted a normal rainfall in the range of 92-108 % of LPA.
With the progress of monsoon, kharif crops such as paddy, pulses, oilseeds and coarse cereals sowing activities have commenced. Agriculture ministry officials said with revival of rainfall activities in the last five days after a sluggish start, the kharif crops sowing would get a boost.
In April 2022, the government had set a record foodgrain production target of 328 million tonne (MT) in 2022-23 crop (July-June) against 314 MT of production in 2021-22 as per the third advance estimate of foodgrain output.
The adequate and well distributed rainfall during monsoon months (June-September), helps in boosting kharif crop production besides ensuring sufficient moisture for the Rabi crops.