For first time in recorded history, rain retreat may start in mid-Oct

Monsoon may start retreating in or after the second week of October, according to India Meteorological Department (IMD). It will be the first time that monsoon would retreat in October since IMD started compiling such records in 1960.

IMD considers June, July, August and September as monsoon months. Normally, monsoon begins retreating on September 1, but the process has been delayed to the third week of September over the past decade.

This year, rainfall is 8% more than the long period average (LPA), indicating that this monsoon will end with “above normal” rains. IMD had forecast in April that monsoon rainfall will be “near normal” at 96% of LPA.

“The monsoon trough is still very active. Low pressure areas are forming, bringing rain to different parts of the country. This is the first time since we have records from 1960 that monsoon has extended to October. The longest it remained active was till September 30 [in 2007],” said M Mohapatra, IMD director general.

For monsoon retreat announcement, rainfall should reduce or stop, moisture should reduce and circulation should change to anti-cyclonic pattern.

But a well-marked low pressure area has formed over the Gulf of Kutch and neighbourhood.“Under its influence, widespread rainfall with isolated heavy to very heavy falls over Gujarat on September 29 and 30, with Isolated extremely heavy falls on September 29 is likely,” said IMD’s Sunday bulletin.

Mohapatra added, “We cannot announce monsoon’s withdrawal unless it stops raining in northwest India. It’s still raining in Gujarat and Rajasthan.”

Bihar has experienced widespread and very heavy rainfall over the past two days. Heavy to very heavy rainfall with isolated extremely heavy falls is also likely in Bihar until September 30, the bulletin said.



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