Monsoon likely to be normal in July: IMD

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New Delhi, Jul 1 (PTI) The southwest monsoon over the country is likely to be normal in July, the India Meteorological Department (IMD) said on Thursday in its forecast for the month.

IMD Director General Mrutunjay Mohapatra said though the rainfall is not expected to be good in the first week of July, the precipitation activity is likely to pick up in the second half of the second week of the month.

'Monthly rainfall for July 2021 over the country as a whole is most likely to be normal (94 to 106 per cent of Long Period Average),' the IMD said.

'Below normal to normal rainfall probability is likely over many areas of northwest India and some parts of south peninsula, central, east and northeast India. Normal to above normal rainfall is most likely to be experienced over parts of central India and adjacent areas of peninsular India and Gangetic plains,' it said.

The monsoon has covered the entire country except for Haryana, Delhi, parts of west Uttar Pradesh, west Rajasthan and Punjab. Temperatures have breached the 40-degree mark in several parts of north India and a respite from the heat seems unlikely anytime soon.

Mohapatra said the advancement of the monsoon is unlikely to happen before July 7.

Since June 19, no progress has been observed in the advancement of the monsoon. June recorded 10 per cent more rainfall than normal. A large part of it was received between June 3 and 19.

Mid-latitude westerly winds, an unfavourable Madden Julian Oscillation (MJO) and the absence of formation of a low pressure system over the north Bay of Bengal are some of the reasons for a break in the monsoon, Mohapatra explained.

Asked if the gap in monsoon rains is normal, Mohapatra said, 'Southwest monsoon does take a break and it is normal. But it is not usual for the break to stretch so much.' Mohapatra further said the latest global model forecasts indicate that the prevailing neutral El Nino-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) conditions are likely to continue over the equatorial Pacific Ocean.

There is an enhanced possibility of development of negative Indian Ocean Dipole (IOD) conditions over the Indian Ocean from July to September, he pointed out.

IOD is associated with the heating and cooling of Indian Ocean waters. A positive IOD is associated with the cooling of Indian Ocean waters while a negative IOD is linked to its heating which is believed to be not good for the Indian monsoon.

As sea surface temperature conditions over the Pacific and the Indian Ocean are known to have a strong influence on the Indian monsoon, the IMD is carefully monitoring the evolution of sea surface conditions over these ocean basins, Mohapatra said.

The IMD will issue the forecast for the rainfall during the second half of the season (August + September) and for the month of August at the end of July or the beginning of August. PTI PR DIV DIV

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