M A I N   N E W S

Normal rainfall expected
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, June 29
The meteorological department today forecast that the country would receive normal rainfall this year. It claimed monsoon would enter Delhi by Monday or Tuesday.

Addressing a press conference, Dr S.K. Srivastava, Director General of the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) said the monsoon, which was currently in a lull phase, was likely to get reactivated by Saturday-Sunday and enter Delhi by Monday or Tuesday.

He said: “The 10-parameter models show that the country as a whole is likely to get 100 per cent of the long period average with a model error of plus or minus 4 per cent.”

It meant normal rainfall between June and September. This forecast was the same as that issued on April 15 by the IMD using eight-parameter models, Mr Srivastava said.

He said weak conditions currently prevailing for the monsoon would be over by this weekend and the system was likely to get reactivated by Saturday-Sunday.

Referring to the change in the forecast, he said, “The IMD today makes forecast with greater confidence and with shorter error margin of plus or minus 4 per cent in comparison to the April forecast that had an error margin of 5 per cent,” he said.

Besides a normal monsoon, the other good news was that the distribution of rainfall was likely to be very homogenous. The Peninsula is expected to get 97 per cent of the normal, Central India 103 per cent, North-East 96 per cent and North-West India 103 per cent of the normal rainfall, said Mr Srivastava.

July rainfall, most important for agriculture, was also likely to be almost normal for the country, about 98 per cent of the long period average (LPA), he said.

“Delhi is likely to get monsoon by Monday or Tuesday. An equatorial trough is coming up as seen in satellite pictures,” he said.

Rainfall so far this year had been better than previous years and till June 23 the country had received 21 per cent above normal rainfall, Mr Srivastava said. However, due to weak conditions prevailing since last week, this figure would drop to about 10 per cent above normal.

As for the forecast in April, the drought being experienced in south-interior Karnataka, north-interior Karnataka and Kerala, for the past two years, was over and May rainfall was more than normal for these areas, he said.

He said there was no possibility of a repetition of 2002, when the country had undergone drought, belying predictions of a normal monsoon, he said. The models showed that there was only 3 per cent probability of deficient rainfall (less than 90 per cent of the LPA) and 7 per cent probability of excess rainfall (more than 110 per cent of the LPA, he said.

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