India recorded 172% excess rain in Jan: IMD

Published on Jan 28, 2022 12:06 AM IST

The reasons for the large excess were three active western disturbances (WDs), including two that came in quick succession, which affected northwest India between January 5 and 9 and then January 21 and 24.

The disturbances originated over the North Atlantic Ocean before December 23 and moved eastwards towards the Indian Himalayas. (Keshav Singh/HT Photo)
The disturbances originated over the North Atlantic Ocean before December 23 and moved eastwards towards the Indian Himalayas. (Keshav Singh/HT Photo)
ByJayashree Nandi, New Delhi

It’s been a wet January across India: 172% excess rain over the country till January 27, with 183% excess rain over northwest India, 261% excess over central India, 154% over the southern peninsula, and 58% excess over northeast India.

The reasons for the large excess were three active western disturbances (WDs), including two that came in quick succession, which affected northwest India between January 5 and 9 and then January 21 and 24.

The disturbances originated over the North Atlantic Ocean before December 23 and moved eastwards towards the Indian Himalayas, although, in general, most of the western disturbances which affect India originate over the Caspian and Mediterranean seas.

“The WDs between January 5 and 9 and January 21 and 24 brought widespread rains not just to northwest India but to central, east and northeast India also. Even parts of peninsular India including Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Rayalseema, Tamil Nadu got widespread rains between January 11 and 14 as the system travelled south. It’s uncommon for WDs to have such widespread impact, they were very intense and had features of polar systems because they originated over the North Atlantic Ocean. The WD between January 21 and 24 was so intense that it remained as a well-marked low over the land,” said RK Jenamani, senior scientist, national weather forecasting centre at IMD.

Widespread and heavy rain and snowfall over the hills and plains also led to markedly low day and night temperatures over most parts of the country including Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Telangana, and Odisha. “Both the rainfall and low temperatures are linked to these WDs that affected northwest India and travelled to central India. There was advection of very cold air from the upper reaches of Himalayas which is leading to below normal day and night temperatures in Mumbai, Pune and other parts of Maharashtra also. There was advection of cold wind from north to south. Additionally, there was a cloud cover which was obstructing sunshine over northwest India leading to record low day temperatures over Delhi,” explained DS Pai, who heads the climate research and services at IMD, Pune.

A fresh feeble western disturbance is very likely to affect the Western Himalayan region from January 29 and another western disturbance is likely to affect northwest India from February 2.

Under the influence of the fresh western disturbance, light isolated rainfall/snowfall is likely over Jammu-Kashmir-Ladakh-Gilgit-Baltistan-Muzaffarabad from Saturday to Monday. Under the influence of another western disturbance, scattered to fairly widespread rainfall or snowfall is likely over Western Himalayan region and light isolated rainfall over adjoining plains from February 2 to 4.

There is likely to be a gradual rise in minimum temperatures over northwest India by 2-3 degree C thereafter.

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