Notwithstanding the plentiful rainfall in June, the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) has forecast less than normal precipitation over the next two months and advised the agriculture ministry to keep ready a contingency plan.
According to Laxman Singh Rathore, director general of the IMD, rainfall could be deficient by 8-10% in July and August respectively.
“June has received a good amount of rainfall. It was also sowing season. But then we should not be complacent and there should be a contingency plan in place as July and August may not have as good rainfall as June.
“There is, however, some respite as the pre-monsoon showers have helped fill up reservoirs to some extent. There was good rainfall in June, which is a crucial month for sowing,” Rathore said.
However, Skymet, a private weather forecasting agency, has predicted “above normal” rainfall (104%) in July, “normal” rainfall (99%) in August and (96%) in September. Anything less than 90% of Long Period Average (LPA) is considered as ‘deficient’ rainfall, 90-96% is ‘below normal’, 96-104% ‘normal’, 104 to 110% is above normal and anything over it is ‘excess’.
The IMD has predicted 88% normal rainfall this year, which is “deficient”. Many parts, especially north-west India, may witness deficient monsoon. However, June received 28% more than normal rainfall.