The southwest monsoon is expected to officially start withdrawing from the county on October 6, in one of the most delayed exits, as the late surge helped the country record a normal rainfall in the June to September period.
“Quantitatively, the 2021 all India monsoon seasonal rainfall between June 1 and September 30 has been 87 cm against the Long-Period Average of 88 cm of 1961-2010 (99 per cent of its LPA),” IMD Director General M Mohapatra said.
“Southwest Monsoon seasonal rainfall for the country as a whole during June-September has been normal (96-106 per cent of the LPA),” he added.
This is for the third consecutive year that the country has recorded rainfall in the normal and above category. It was above normal in 2019 and 2020 too.
South-west monsoon rains, which are vital for India’s farmers, usually arrive at the southernmost Kerala coast around June 1 and start retreating in mid-September from the north-western state of Rajasthan.
The monsoon rains are vital because nearly half of India’s farmland gets no irrigation and is dependent on the annual monsoon.
Farming accounts for nearly 15% of India’s economy, which is the third largest in Asia, and sustains more than half of a population of 1.3 billion.
India received 9% lower rainfall than normal up to the end of August, but a third more than normal in September narrowed the deficit to 1%, the IMD said.
In fact, late rains in September were estimated to be around 260.44 millimeters–among the highest September rains this century.
The previous best September rains were in 2019, when the country had received around 260.44 millimeters. Normally, India should receive around 170 millimeters in September, but this year it received 230 millimeters, which was around 35.2 per cent more than normal.