Weather Gods these days are on the overdrive to break their own records. Sunday’s rains in Delhi announced the arrival of monsoon. It was the earliest ever since 1901, the time from which the Met Department started maintaining records.
The southwest monsoon that drenched the capital with its first showers of the season in fact arrived nearly two weeks ahead of its normal onset date of June 29. Heavy rains, accompanied by lightning in some areas, lashed the capital since 7:30 am on Sunday, forcing many people to stay in the safe confines of their homes.
According to the weathermen, monsoon had set in over Delhi on June 28 last year. In 1998, the capital received its first monsoon showers on June 16.
Monsoon has been advancing rapidly and has covered the entire country other than some parts of Rajasthan.
The Met office also added that the conditions are favourable for further advance of monsoon into the remaining parts of the country during next two-three days. Forecast suggests widespread rains with heavy to very heavy rainfall over western Himalayan region and northern plains during the next three days.
In the next few days, Delhi will get a fair share of heavy rainfall. B.P. Yadav, director of Meteorological Department said: “In the next few days the humidity levels are set to rise drastically and might go up to 100 per cent, but this is normal in the monsoons. The temperatures have gone down by almost 11 degree Celsius. The maximum temperature recorded on Sunday was 28.5 degree Celsius, while on Saturday it was around 35.5 degree Celsius.
The early arrival of monsoons brought the temperatures down, but Delhiites seethed as they were caught unawares in flash traffic jams and waterlogged streets. Waterlogged roads and the ongoing constructions on the route added to the woes of the commuters. The people who suffered the most were those who were on their way to the airport. Many of them were late for their flights. “The jam was maddening. I was stuck near IIT campus for more than 45 minutes. The roads were waterlogged and it just added to our problems. By the time I managed to reach airport I was late for my flight,” said Tarun Makhija, a flier. Almost all the routes leading to the airport were jammed during the heavy rains.
There were massive traffic snarls in areas like Arya Samaj Road, Karol Bagh, M.G. Road and Aaya Nagar areas.
The Municipal Corporation of Delhi, which had made tall claims about its preparedness to deal with the monsoon, received complaints from all its 12 zones. South and the central zones were the worst hit. Residents in areas like Chittaranjan Park, Greater Kailash-II, Lajpat Nagar and Vasant Kunj in the south zone were confined to their homes due to waterlogged streets.
The civic agency had, however, said it would install 525 pumps in these areas so that water can be prevented from accumulating on the streets. The civic body’s Standing Committee chairman Vijender Gupta said, “This year, it has been raining continuously since May. Our schedule for the de-silting drive of drains was disrupted but things are on track now. The work will be completed soon. We are prepared for the monsoon.”