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India gets 57% below-average rains in first week of June
India received 57% lower rainfall than average in the first week of June, weather office data showed on Wednesday, after the monsoon's onset over its southern coast was delayed by the formation of a cyclone. In the week to June 7, India received 9.9 mm rainfall against the normal 23.1 mm, according to the state-run India Meteorological Department (IMD).
India received 57% lower rainfall than average in the first week of June, weather office data showed on Wednesday, after the monsoon's onset over its southern coast was delayed by the formation of a cyclone.
In the week to June 7, India received 9.9 mm rainfall against the normal 23.1 mm, according to the state-run India Meteorological Department (IMD). The monsoon, the lifeblood of the country's $3 trillion economy, delivers nearly 70% of the rain India needs to water farms and recharge reservoirs and aquifers.
Rains usually lash the southern state of Kerala around June 1 and cover the whole country by mid-July. This year, the IMD was expecting the arrival of monsoon rains over the state's coast on June 4, but it hasn't reached yet. The formation of a very severe cyclonic storm Biparjoy in the Arabian Sea has been affecting the onset of monsoon, said a senior IMD official, who declined to be named as he is not authorised to talk to media.
"Conditions are becoming favourable for monsoon onset over Kerala in the next two days," he said. Nearly half of India's farmland, without any irrigation cover, depends on the annual June-September rains to grow several crops. The monsoon's late start could delay the planting of rice, cotton, corn, soybean and sugar cane, traders said.
India's weather office has forecast below average rains for June, with the monsoon expected to pick up later. However, for the entire four-month season, the IMD has forecast an average amount of rain despite the formation of a possible El Nino weather phenomenon.