Monsoon on move, may hit north India this weekend

Monsoon on move, may hit north India this weekend

NEW DELHI: The monsoon marched into more parts of central India on Sunday, registering movement for the second consecutive day after it had remained stalled for 11 days. Met officials expect the advance to continue, with the rain-bearing system now looking likely to cover parts of north India, including Delhi, by June 29 to July 1.
As a precursor to the real thing, pre-monsoon showers are expected in north India from Tuesday or Wednesday, which could be quite widespread. The monsoon entered southern Madhya Pradesh on Sunday while pushing further into Maharashtra and Gujarat, a state it entered the previous day. The India Meteorological Department said the advance in central India, as well as in the east, is expected to continue in the next two days.
The system had remained stalled since June 12 for an unusually long period of 11 days due to unfavourable conditions in the Indian Ocean, from where the rain-laden winds originate. This has resulted in a countrywide rainfall deficit of 11%.“We expect good rainfall in the next few days that will hopefully wipe out much of the deficit by the end of this month,” said M Mohapatra, additional director-general, IMD.
The monsoon is still in its advancing stage, during which it moves north and westwards into the India subcontinent in spurts, covering the entire country normally by the middle of July.
IMD expects a good monsoon in the crucial sowing month of July, during which it has forecast 101% rainfall (1 percentage point higher than normal) while the forecast for the entire June-September period is 97%, on the lower end of the normal range. The normal date for the monsoon to arrive in Delhi is June 29. “Conditions at the moment suggest the monsoon will arrive on time in north India, give or take one or two days,” said B P Yadav from IMD’s Regional Meteorological Centre. However, there are now growing fears of an El Nino forming during the last month of the monsoon season which could subdue rains during September. Most international weather agencies have now put out an “El Nino watch” alert in view of continued warming in the Pacific. El Nino is an abnormal warming of ocean waters in the east equatorial region of the Pacific, which often suppresses the southwest monsoon.
“There’s a good chance of El Nino forming this year. The higher uncertainty is about when it will set in. If it forms after September, the monsoon may not get impacted. If it happens earlier, we could see subdued rainfall in September.