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Sun shines bright, no rain in sight

Where have all the showers gone.... Long time ago

The Pete Seeger classic has been remixed and playing on loop in the minds of Calcuttans over the past few days. “I wonder why it has stopped raining. The city is back to its usual muggy self,” said Debanjali Mitra, 33, of Entally, adding: “I hope the showers are back soon.”

But news from the Met office is hardly as bright as the sun shining over the city.

“Calcutta received a huge amount of rain in June. But the weather conditions have changed since then as the monsoon trough has moved north,” said a senior official of the India Meteorological Department, Delhi.

Unlike the last week of June, when it rained everyday, showers have been playing truant this month. Weather officials say the situation is unlikely to change soon. The Met office has recorded only 0.2mm in the first week of July compared with 135mm of rainfall in the last seven days of June.

No rain has meant a hot and humid weather, much like it had been in the first week of June before monsoon arrived and poured over 400mm over the city. With the rain staying away, the mercury has climbed up by around three degrees to touch nearly 35.

The constant cloud cover in June had been the result of depression and low-pressure areas in the Bay of Bengal and the monsoon trough being in the vicinity of Bengal, weather experts said.

Usually, when there is a strong weather system at this time of the year, it often pulls the monsoon trough towards it and intensifies it. In such a situation, both the low-pressure area and the monsoon trough attract moisture-laden water from the sea, leading to formation of tall rain-bearing clouds.

At present, however, there is no such weather system near Calcutta and meteorologists do not see one developing shortly.

Pictures sent by the Kalpana I satellite show absolutely no clouds over Calcutta while most parts of the country are infested with dense clouds.

July, traditionally being the rainiest month of the year, has a lot of catching up to do.

Till then, Calcuttans will be left hoping and praying that the showers make a comeback.