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August downpours not enough to wipe out rain deficit

MET office warns of thunderstorm, lightning and heavy rain on Wednesday
Rain lashes Mango in Jamshedpur on Wednesday.
Rain lashes Mango in Jamshedpur on Wednesday.
Bhola Prasad

Pinaki Majumdar   |   Jamshedpur   |   Published 01.09.20, 05:29 PM

August, the third month of the monsoon season, did see frequent downpours, but the rainfall was not enough to make up the deficit that stood at 8 per cent at the end of the month.

According to data from IMD's Ranchi Meteorological Centre, Jharkhand received 754.4 mm rainfall against a normal of 820 mm in August. Thus, the cumulative rainfall of Jharkhand during the first three monsoon months, ie, June to August, was eight per cent below normal of long period average (LPA).

However, September is likely to see a good spell of rain, experts have said.

Statistics revealed that last year (2019), August had ended with 28 per cent rain deficit while in 2018 the deficit was 25 per cent. In 2017, the overall rainfall in Jharkhand stood at 1 per cent surplus at the end of August, while in 2016, August ended with a rain deficit of 6 per cent.

According to Met statistics, Latehar district recorded the highest cumulative rainfall (June to August) with 1,029.7 mm against a normal of 813.2 mm, which is a surplus of 27 per cent.

This was followed closely by East Singhbhum district which recorded 21 per cent surplus rain at the end of August. According to Met data, East Singhbhum district recorded actual rainfall of 1,040.4 mm against a normal of 859.5 mm.

The other districts in the rain-surplus list are Palamau, Dumka, Ramgarh, Latehar and Lohardaga.

Rainfall in Koderma was normal. Against a normal of 657.1 mm, Koderma at the end of August recorded 656 mm rain.

Districts like Bokaro, Chatra Deoghar, Dhanbad, Garhwa Giridih, Godda, Gumla, Hazaribagh, Jamtara, Pakur, Sahebganj, Simdega, West Singhbhum, Seraikela-Kharsawan and Ranchi recorded deficit rain.

Weathermen said on Tuesday that the southwest monsoon was weak over Jharkhand during the past 24 hours. Dry weather prevailed in most of the districts. Only two IMD observatories _ Arki in Khunti and Hunterganj in Chatra district _ recorded rain in the past 24 hours, ie, between 8.30 am on Monday to 8.30 am on Tuesday.

No threat of drought

But the good news is that experts aren’t alarmed at the deficit figures. "Rainfall deficit in several districts is in the normal range. Rainfall distribution till August was up to the mark. Hence, there is no threat of drought,” said A Wadood, a weather scientist and agriculture expert of Birsa Agriculture University, Kanke.

“As per IMD's long range forecast, we are expecting a good shower show in September, the last monsoon month," he said.

On Tuesday, most parts of Jharkhand, including Jamshedpur, Ranchi, Daltonganj, Dhanbad, Bokaro and Hazaribagh, woke up to a gloomy and overcast conditions. As the day progressed, Jamshedpur, Ranchi, Ramgarh, Bokaro, Dhanbad, Seraikela and Chaibasa experienced light to moderate rain.

Thunderstorm alert

The forecast issued by IMD's Ranchi Met Centre indicated thunderstorm accompanied by lightning and heavy rain over southern Jharkhand in the next 24 hours. Isolated pockets of southern and central Jharkhand could experience lightning and thunder too in the next 48 hours.

"The monsoon trough has moved close to the foothills of Himalayas in the north. But several districts of Jharkhand will continue to get rain due to the impact of a cyclonic circulation over southern Assam. The cyclonic circulation was extending 3.6 km above mean sea level," said S.D Kotal, director of Ranchi Metrological Centre.

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