Monsoon to be delayed and weak in State

 Like last year, this year too the onset of monsoon in Karnataka may be delayed and the projected deficiency in rains is 20 per cent in June.

According to Srinivas Reddy, Director, Karnataka State Natural Disaster Monitoring Centre (KSNDMC), the onset of monsoon in the State will be only after June 10. Also, it will be a weak monsoon period and might affect early sowing activities.

However, Reddy said that as different weather organisations have presented contradictory seasonal outlook for this monsoon, the KSNDMC was adopting a wait and watch policy, before it offers an advisory to the State government. He said it would be better to wait for the final outlook till May end or first week of June by all said agencies, before pressing the panic button, if at all it needs to.

He said that as per the outlook presented by the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD), there was 68 per cent probability of the country as a whole receiving below normal rainfall.

Deficient rainfall

Bengaluru-based Centre for Mathematical Modelling and Computer Simulation (C-MMACs) too has predicted that about 70 pc of Karnataka will receive deficient rainfall in June.

Districts in North Interior Karnataka like Belagavi, Bagalkote, Dharwad, Gadag, Haveri, Koppal and Davangere, will be the worst hit. While it has predicted that there will be normal rainfall in 90 pc of the State in the month of July, it has said that there would be normal or above normal rainfall in the month of August.

He, however, said that the seasonal outlook presented by Noida-based Skymet Weather Services Private Limited, and South Asian Climate Outlook Forum (SASCOF), Pune, contradicted the IMD and C-MMACs predictions.

Skymet has predicted that there was 60 pc chance of normal rainfall during the entire monsoon period.

It has predicted that the onset of monsoon in Karnataka would be much earlier, as early as end of May.

SASCOF, which forecasts weather conditions in South Asian countries, has also said that more than 60 pc of Karnataka - including South Interior Karnataka - malnad and coastal, will get normal rainfall, while North Interior Karnataka was expected to receive below normal rainfall.

Early sowing

North Interior Karnataka is presently reeling under excess rainfall, which is known as
pre-monsoon showers, which has been ‘good’ in all districts of Karnataka.

The showers have helped early sowing in Mysuru and Chamarajanagar, and coffee growing areas. However, crops in around 65,000 hectares have been damaged due the rains in April.

Meanwhile, the State Agriculture department has begun distributing seeds and fertilisers to farmers. Officials said that early sowing had already taken place in 1.26 lakh hectares in Mysuru, Chamarajanagar, Mandya, Chikkamagaluru, Hassan, Davangere and Tumakuru, which is a positive indicator.

Last year, owing to deficient rainfall in the initial stages the department had to advice change in the cropping pattern. The department is targeting sowing in 74 lakh hectares. Last year, sowing was achieved only in 69.36 lakh hectares.

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