NEW DELHI: The country is going to get a good monsoon that could boost farm output and help rein in inflation. If this happens, then the country will be having a third straight year without drought.
Announcing the monsoon forecast watched keenly by policy makers, Earth Sciences Minister Vilasrao Deshmukh said here on Thursday that rains during the June-September season are likely to be 99% of the long-term average.
The forecast has been put out by India Meteorological Department (IMD) which has predicted rains between 96-104% of a 50-year average of 89 centimetres in the entire four-month season as normal.
Monsoon is likely to have average rainfall in 2012 despite fears the El Nino weather pattern may emerge in the second half of the season, he said. El Nino, an abnormal warming of waters in the equatorial tropical Pacific, is linked with poor rains or a drought-like situation in South East Asia and Australia. Monsoon rains irrigate about 60% of farms in the country and it accounts for about 15% of the country’s economy. The latest government forecast is also in line with last week’s estimate of a global weather forum.
“The IMD considers rains between 96-104 per cent of a 50-year average of 89 centimetres in the entire four-month season as normal. Southwest monsoon seasonal rainfall for the country as a whole is most likely to be normal with the probability of 47 per cent,” Deshmukh said. An analysis of five predictors for the long-range forecast indicates 24 per cent probability for a below normal rainfall, he said. However, the probability of seasonal rainfall to be deficient or excess is less than 10 per cent, which is relatively low, Deshmukh added.