Food, Festivals and Events / Photography : Nature and beyond

Chasing Rains… Indian #Monsoon 2013

Chasing Rains

#Indian #Monsoon 2013

My favorite season of the year is approaching, rains connect me with the nature, I always try and look for opportunities to get soaked in the rain. This year again, I would try to keep up with the  Southwest monsoon, as and when it enters Kerala in India from the Arabian Sea and till the time it reaches Delhi and then covers the whole of the country. Wish one day I’d be able to capture the rains in different part of India, as they move across geography. But for the time being I will try to soak it in through the snaps taken by people across India during the rains.

30th July 2013

  • In the Monsoon season, cumulative Rainfall for the country as a whole during the period 1st June to 27th July, 2013 is 16% more than LPA.
  • Rainfall (% departure from LPA) in the four broad geographical divisions of the country during the above period was
    • 38% in North West India
    • 42% in Central India
    • 27% in South Peninsula
    • (-) 35% in East & North East India
  • Out of a total of 36 met sub-divisions, 30 met sub-divisions constituting 86% of the total area of the country have received excess / normal rainfall and 06 met sub-divisions constituting 14% of  the total area of the country have received deficient rainfall.
  • As per latest information available on sowing of crops, around 60.1% of the normal area under kharif crops have been sown up to 19.07.2013. Area sown under all kharif crops taken together has been reported to be 636.40 lakh hectares at All India level as compared to 511.27 lakh hectares in the corresponding period of last year.
  • Among the food grains, inflation for Rice has increased to 19.11% from the previous month’s level of 18.48% & Cereals to 17.18% from the previous month’s level of 16.01%; Wheat to 13.83% from the previous month’s level of 12.65% and Pulses has decreased to 1.95% from the previous month’s level of 5.95%.

After 6 Hour Power Cut Heavy Rain In Faridabad

25th June 2013

During the week, Southwest monsoon has covered remaining parts of Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh & Rajasthan and entire Punjab, Haryana, Delhi, Jammu & Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand. Thus it covered the entire country on 16 June, about one month early than its normal date. During the week ending on 19 June, 2013, northwest & central India received very high rainfall (400% & 172% above the respective long period average). Cumulative all India rainfall till 19 June, 2013 was 54% above the LPA with excess/normal rainfall activity over 32 subdivisions of the country


rain_monsoon_india 2013

Rains India

Rains 2013


21st June 2013

This is the other face of Rains, always remembered romantically and with nostalgia, but those who would have witnessed the fury of nature in the extremely high amount of rains which hit Uttarakhand state of India few days back. A disaster seems to have hit the Himalayan state of Uttarakhand in the northern part of India, its a combination of extremely dangerous ecological situation created by humans coupled with the furious backlash by the nature. More than 50,000 people are still stuck in the mountain areas, cut off from the rest of the country, Indian security forces are trying their best to air-lift the survivors as soon as they can. The number of dead in this disaster can never be calculated accurately, lets not speculate on the same and hope that all those who survived reach their homes safely.

The scenes from the site are truly horrific.


10th June 2013

monsoon 2013

This year the southwest monsoon set in over Kerala on 1st June which is also the normal date of onset. It advanced into entire south Arabian Sea, Maldive-Comorin area, Lakshadweep, some parts of central Arabian Sea, entire Kerala, some parts of Coastal &  South Interior Karnataka, most parts of Tamilnadu on 1st June. It covered rest Karnataka, entire Arunachal Pradesh & Goa, most parts of Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Meghalaya,
Nagaland, Manipur, Mizoram, southern parts of Maharashtra and some parts of SubHimalayan West Bengal & Sikkim by 7th June 2013.  As on 7th June 2013, the Northern Limit of Monsoon (NLM) passes through Harnai, Parbhani, Ramgundam, Vishakhapatnam, Aizwal, Guwahati, Cooch Behar and  Gangtok.

The cumulative seasonal rainfall for the country as a whole is 1% below the Long  Period Average. Out of 36 meteorological subdivisions, the rainfall has been excess over 15, normal over 06, deficient over 06, scanty over 09 subdivisions. Peninsular India except Konkan & Goa, West Madhya Pradesh, East U.P, Bihar, Jharkhand, Sub-Himalayan West Bengal & Sikkim, Andaman & Nicobar Islands and Lakshadweep received normal to excess rainfall

7th June 2013

A surprise change in weather in Delhi, Squall cools down the temperature but also triggered a wide spread electricity break-down in Delhi NCR region. While Japanese weather experts have a warning for the Indian monsoon in 2013. India’s southwest monsoon, the lifeline of millions of farmers across the country, might lose its intensity next month, says The Japan Agency for Marine Earth Science and Technology (Jamstec). July is a crucial period for sowing of kharif crops and the one in which the country is supposed to get the largest part of the four-month monsoon showers. Officials say Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar is believed to have informed Maharashtra chief minister Prithviraj Chavan about the possible monsoon break and told him to prepare remedial measures; the state is already suffering from one of its worst droughts in 40 years. July is supposed to get around 28 centimetres or 31%  of the total rainfall during the four-month southwest monsoon. Jamstec says the Indian summer monsoon is expected to be below normal because of a negative Indian Ocean Dipole (an irregular oscillation of sea-surface temperatures in which the western part becomes alternately warmer and then colder than the eastern part of the ocean). It adds that countervailing factors might bring down the negative impact to some extent.

In Delhi, there are chances of thunder-squalls as well at one or two place during the next 24 hours. Photo: Pradeep Gaur/Mint<br /><br /><br /><br />

A man along with his family rides a motorcycle during a heavy rain shower in Allahabad

Photo : Jitendra Prakash via Reuters

People hold umbrellas as they walk in heavy rain in Shimla

Photo : Via Reuters

A commuter jumps from a bus during a heavy rain shower at a bus stop in Kochi

Photo by Sivaram via Reuter

6th June 2013

According to latest report by IMD, the southwest monsoon has further advanced into some more parts of central Arabian Sea, entire Goa, some parts of south Konkan, south Madhya Maharashtra, Telangana and south coastal Andhra Pradesh, remaining parts of south interior Karnataka and Rayalaseema, most parts of north interior Karnataka and some more parts of central Bay of Bengal.

Over last few days rainfall had occurred at many places over south Konkan & Goa, south Madhya Maharashtra, Coastal Karnataka and at a few places over Telangana, Rayalaseema and interior Karnataka.


3rd June 2013

Monsoon keeps the date with India, arrives in Kerala & Andhra Pradesh on time…



Heavy rain lashing Kurnool on Sunday.PHOTO: U. SUBRAMANYAM

2nd June 2013

Pre-monsoon rain in Mumbai…

1st June 2013

Pre-monsoon rain shower hits Kerala on 31st May 2013.

The premonsoon showers in Kerala on May 31, 2013 indicated that the monsoon is not far away from the state. (TOI photo by Jipson Sikhera)

The premonsoon showers in Kerala on May 31, 2013 indicated that the monsoon is not far away from the state. (TOI photo by Jipson Sikhera)

Update 24th May 2013

  • The latest update implies that the date of southwest monsoon onset over Kerala is likely to be on 3rd June with a model error of ± 4 days. June 1 is considered the normal time for onset over Kerala. Any delay could adversely affect the productivity of the crops.
  • Cumulative Pre-monsoon Rainfall for the country as a whole during the period 1st March to 15th May, 2013 is 28% less than LPA.
  • Rainfall in the four broad geographical divisions of the country during the above period was

Water Storage & Availability

  • The Central Water Commission monitors the live storage of 84 important/major reservoirs, having capacity at Full Reservoir Level (FRL) of 154.42 billion cubic meters (BCM), which is about 73% of total reservoir capacity in the country.
  • Water stock in 84 major reservoirs decreased to 36.02 BCM from the previous week’s level of 38.07 BCM. Current storage is less than the last year’s position of 35.78 BCM and lower than the average of last 10 year’s storage of 29.31 BCM.

Impact of Monsoon on Kharif Crop

  • For the last few years, India has observed erratic behavior of Monsoon rains. A below normal rains in most parts of India especially during the critical period of sowing of the Kharif crops from June-August had created havoc with the Indian Agricultural sector leading to fall in production in many commodities and creating an upward thrust on Inflation.
  • Not just the amount but also proper distribution of rainfall is needed in India as Agri markets are susceptible to very high as well as very low rains. The Southern states of Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka have been receiving low rains for quite sometime. Also drought like situations persist in some areas in Maharashtra and Gujarat. It is very important for these crucial states to receive high rains this year. Again timing of arrival of Monsoon is critical. Generally delayed arrivals of the South-West Monsoon in Kerala (during 1st week of June) creates a firmness in the Indian market rates for the commodities. Thus for both consumers and also for farmers who depend on the Rains for a good crop, it is important that Monsoon arrives on time in the Indian sub-continent.
  • Over the last few years we have seen various International agencies had predicted a below-normal Monsoon for India – and these had turned out to be correct. Thus, when a few days back, they predicted a normal Monsoon this year, it came not just as a surprise but also as a relief for everyone reeling under high price and Inflation.
  • Timely arrival of rains from June this year could help bring some relief to everyone. With prices of Petrol and Diesel on the rise, Agri commodity rates have also generally always been on the rise. Better sowing of Kharif crops (contributing 60%) from June onwards could result in better production of Foodgrains and Pulses – leading to cooling off of the prices in the near term.
  • Till now, reports have been favorable for its progress. All eyes would however be on this aspect only over the next few  weeks when it starts hitting the Kerala coast from 1st week of June onwards.

Update 9th May 2013

  • Cumulative Pre-monsoon Rainfall for the country as a whole during the period 1st March to 01st May, 2013 is 35% less than LPA.
  • Rainfall in the four broad geographical divisions of the country during the above period was
    • (- )49% in North West India
    • 8% in Central India
    • (-)13% in South Peninsula
    • (-) 40% in East & North East India.
  • Out of a total of 36 met sub-divisions, 15 met sub-divisions constituting 49% of the total area of the country have received excess / normal rainfall 21 met sub-divisions constituting 51% of the total area of the country have received deficient/scanty rainfall and 01 met sub-division constituting 1% of the total area of the country have received no rainfall.
  • Rainfall during the week (25th April – 01st May, 2013) Rainfall was excess / normal in 11 met sub-divisions, deficient / scanty in 24 and no rain in 01 met sub-division out of 36 meteorological sub-divisions.
  • Cumulative rainfall (01st March – 01st May, 2013) Rainfall was excess / normal in 15 met Sub-divisions and deficient / scanty in 21 met sub-divisions out of 36 meteorological subdivisions.

30th April 2013

monsoon 2013 prediction

Pre-monsoon Prediction by IMD – April 2013

The Indian Meteorological Department (IMD( is predicting normal rainfall during the Southwest Monsoon Seasonal Rainfall during 2013

The rainfall for the country as a whole is expected to be 96 to 104% of Long Term Average during June to September this year. Quantitatively, the monsoon seasonal rainfall is likely to be 98% of the Long Period Average with a model error of  _+ 5%. The LPA of the season rainfall over the country as a whole for the period 1951-2000 is 89 cm. Also, the probability for normal rainfall is 46%, as against the climatologically value of 33%.

IMD will issue the update forecast in June 2013 as a part of the second stage forecast. Along with the update forecast, separate forecasts  for the monthly (July and August) rainfall over the country as a whole and seasonal (June-September) rainfall over the four geographical regions of India.

Over most part of India, 70-90% of the annual rain fall is received during the southwest monsoon (June-September). This rain fall is positively related to crop production in the country which has significant impact on the economy of the country. The probability of the monsoon being deficient (below 90% of LPA), above normal (104 to 110% of LPA) or excessive (over 110% of LPA) are very slim.

Negative Indian Ocean Dipole event, which could have an adverse impact on the monsoon, would only be a weak event, reaching its maximum peak only in Autumn, and therefore was unlikely to affect monsoon. IMD would keep a close watch on the situation so that the government could take timely remedial measures just in case conditions hinting at a strong IOD event developed.

ESSO-India Meteorological Department (IMD) issues various monthly and seasonal operational forecasts for rainfall during the south-west monsoon season.  Operational models are critically reviewed regularly and further improved through in-house research activities.  Operational forecasts for the southwest monsoon season (June – September) rainfall over the country as a whole are issued in two stages. The first long range forecast for the all India monsoon rainfall is issued in April and the forecast update is issued in June. In the ESSO-IMD’s Ensemble Statistical Forecasting system for the April forecast, the following 5 predictors are used. The model forecast error of the April forecasting system is ±5%. The 5-parameter ensemble statistical forecasting system was also used to prepare probability forecasts for five pre-defined rainfall categories. The climatological probabilities for these categories are 16%, 17%, 33, 16% and 17% respectively.

  1. Deficient           : Less than 90% of LPA
  2. Below normal : 90-96% of LPA
  3. Normal              : 96-104% of LPA
  4. Above normal: 104-110% of LPA
  5. Excess                : Above 110% of LPA

S. No




North Atlantic Sea Surface Temperature

December + January


Equatorial South Indian Ocean Sea Surface Temperature

February + March


East Asia Mean Sea Level Pressure

February + March


NW Europe Land Surface Air Temperature



Equatorial Pacific Warm Water Volume

February + March

For the 2013 southwest monsoon season, the predicted probabilities based on the 5-parameter ensemble forecasting system for these 5 categories are  10%, 27 %,  46%,  14% and  3% respectively. Thus the all India monsoon season rainfall is most likely to be normal. 

 A good rainfall is crucial for Agricutlure

Large parts of peninsular India have been hit by a dry spell, with water levels in many reservoirs reaching their lowest. This may affect the summer planting of crops such as rice, the prices of which (especially finer varieties) have flared up in the southern States. A good monsoon is crucial for agriculture, which accounts for about 15% of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP), as 70%  of the farmland are rain dependent. Despite drought in parts of Maharashtra, Gujarat and Karnataka last year, the country’s foodgrains output touched 254 million tonnes.

As on April 1, food stocks in the Central pool stood at 59.67 million tonnes, including 35.46 mt of rice and 24.20 mt of wheat.


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