Saturday, June 22, 2024

IMD announces onset of SW over Nicobar Islands, South Andaman sea

NEW DELHI, MAY 19: The India Meteorological Department (IMD) on Sunday announced the onset of Southwest monsoon, the lifeline of India’s farm-based economy, over the Nicobar Islands and South Andaman sea.
The IMD has also predicted that heavy to very heavy rainfall is likely to continue over south Peninsular India till May 23, with extremely heavy falls during May, 19-21, 2024.
The southwest monsoon season commences in June and lasts till September.
According to the IMD, Southwest Monsoon advanced into some parts of Maldives & Comorin area and some parts of South Bay of Bengal, Nicobar Islands and South Andaman Sea.
The announcement comes after conditions were found suitable for the advancement of monsoon. The conditions include an increase in the strength of Westerly winds in the lower tropospheric levels (upto 3 km) to about 20 knots, prevalence of southwesterly winds up to the height of 4.5 km above mean sea level over the region and an increase in cloudiness. Moreover, the Outgoing Longwave Radiation (OLR) over the area was less than 200 watts per sq metre.
“Considering all the above satisfied conditions”, the IMD announced, “Southwest Monsoon has advanced into some parts of Maldives & Comorin area and some parts of South Bay of Bengal, Nicobar Islands and South Andaman Sea today, the 19th May, 2024.”
Last month, the IMD had forecast above-normal rain in the monsoon season in India with favourable La Nina conditions, cooling of equatorial Pacific Ocean, expected to set in by August-September.
La Nina conditions help in a good monsoon season over India.
Large parts of the country are battling a brutal heat wave with maximum temperatures touching 48 degrees Celsius, shattering records in several States and severely impacting health and livelihoods.
Southern India experienced heat wave spells in April.
The crippling heat is straining power grids and drying up water bodies triggering drought-like conditions in parts of the country.
A prediction of above-normal monsoonal rainfall, therefore, comes as a huge relief to the fast-developing South Asian nation.
The monsoon is critical for India’s agricultural landscape, with 52% of the net cultivated area relying on it.
It is also crucial for replenishing reservoirs critical for drinking water, apart from power generation across the country.
June and July are considered the most important monsoon months for agriculture because most of the sowing for the kharif crop takes place during this period.
(TNIE with PTI inputs)