Monsoon 2nd half likely to be normal in good sign for economy

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NEW DELHI: Seasonal rainfall across the country as a whole during the second half (August-September) of the monsoon is most likely to be normal with a "tendency to be on the positive side of normal", the India Meteorological Department (IMD) said in its updated forecast on Monday.
The forecast is almost in sync, barring aberrations in northwest India including Punjab, Haryana and Delhi, with what was predicted first in mid-April and later on June 1 about the summer (southwest) monsoon. The prediction will be reassuring as it holds the promise of growth in the rural economy at a time when several sectors have been hit by Covid.

The "normal" rainfall in August-September will help in accelerating kharif (summer sown) crop-sowing operations which remained depressed during mid-June to mid-July due to slow progress of monsoon towards northwest India and the overall "break" phase of seasonal rainfall from June 21 for nearly three weeks.
Though the overall sown area has already crossed the threshold of "normal" acreage, the pace of sowing operations is now expected to bridge the gap compared to 2020 in coming days.
"As the changes in the sea surface temperature conditions over the Pacific and the Indian Ocean are known to influence the Indian monsoon, we are carefully monitoring the evolution of sea surface conditions over these ocean basins," said M Mohapatra, director general of IMD.
The weather forecasting agency said the overall rainfall during the next two months is most likely to be 95 to 105% of the long period average (LPA). The LPA of August to September rainfall over the country as a whole for the period 1961-2010 is 428.3 mm. As far as the monthly forecast is concerned, the Met department said rainfall in August is most likely to be normal at 94 to 106% of the LPA.
The spatial distribution of probabilistic forecasts for the tercile categories (above normal, normal and below normal) for August-September suggests "below normal to normal" rainfall over many parts of the northwest, east and northeast parts of the country. On the other hand, most parts of peninsular India and adjacent central India would experience "normal to above-normal rainfall" during the second half of the monsoon season.

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