NEW DELHI: This winter season continues to make news. December saw record-breaking cold in the north and now January is the wettest India has experienced in 15 years. Met records show countrywide rainfall during this month has been 67% above normal (till January 30), with north, and east and northeast regions receiving almost 80% surplus rains.
Experts said the wet conditions and cold conditions in January, particularly over north India, have been ideal for rabi crops such as wheat, which is heading for a bumper harvest.
All-India average rainfall in January so far has been 27.9mm, highest since 2005, when 28.1mm was recorded, met records reveal. Winter rainfall is mainly regulated by western disturbances (WDs) — pulses of moist winds travelling from regions close to the Mediterranean, which bring wet weather to north and, at times, central India.
“Normally, there are five to seven WDs in January. This month, we got 10. Not just that, many of these WDs came in through a more southerly path which brought rainfall to the northern plains in addition to the western Himalayan states,” said Mrutyunjay Mohapatra, head of India Meteorological Department.
An additional factor brought rain to many parts of central India as well. “This month, we saw several of the WDs being supported by easterly winds from Bay of Bengal. The confluence of the two systems increased the geographical spread of the rainfall, with Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and Odisha too getting wet weather,” Mohapatra said.
The weather in January was quite a contrast to December, when there were no WDs for a 16-17 day period — except for a single, weak disturbance — during which day temperatures remained way below normal in north India, leading to the longest “cold day” spell over the region since 1901.
In January, a WD has hit norRead More – Source