A fresh system now lurking over the Andaman Sea is threatening to make Diwali rainy in Kolkata.
What took shape on Monday as a cyclonic circulation is likely to get stronger, according to the Met forecast.
How strong, remains to be seen.
“A cyclonic circulation has formed over the central and adjoining north Andaman Sea and its neighbourhood. It is expected to move west-northwestwards. Around October 20-21, it is expected to be over the central Bay of Bengal as a low-pressure area. By October 22, it will become a depression,” said Mrutyunjay Mohapatra, the director-general of India Meteorological Department.
Diwali will be celebrated on October 24.
Mohapatra, in Kolkata on an official visit, chaired a news conference at the Met office in Alipore, where he cautioned against jumping into a premature conclusion about “rumours” doing the rounds on social media that the system will turn into a cyclone.
“What happens after the system turns into a depression is still not clear. The IMD is constantly monitoring the system. We will give an update in a day or two,” he said.
But Diwali is likely to be rainy in Kolkata, irrespective of the future of the system, he said.
Sanjib Bandyopadhyay, deputy director-general of IMD, Kolkata, said the Met office would soon issue a detailed forecast for Diwali.
“We will issue a Diwali forecast, detailing the expected spread and intensity of the rain,” he said.
A Met official said May and October-November — pre-and post-monsoon months — are favourable for cyclonic storms because the sea surface temperature is on the higher side.
A weather system draws on the heat and moisture to gain strength on the sea.
The IMD radar system atop the New Secretariat building on Strand Road is being overhauled, Mohapatra said on Monday.
“The radar is under repair. IMD and Isro are working together to repair it. The work should be complete by year-end, or the beginning of next year,” he said.
The radar was imported from Germany in 2002 at a cost of Rs 20 crore. Two more radar will be set up in Kolkata in a couple of years, Mohapatra said.
The IMD is in the early stages of discussions with the Kolkata Municipal Corporation to launch an urban flood warning system for Kolkata, Bandyopadhyay said on Monday.
“The system will entail impact-based forecast. We want to give area-specific forecast,” he said.