{News} Monsoon holds strong, west coast ‘low’ soon

Monsoon holds strong, west coast ‘low’ soon

The Hindu Business Line, 9 June 2008
By Vinson Kurian

An India Meteorological Department (IMD) update said on Sunday that conditions were favourable for further advance of the monsoon into south Gujarat, parts of Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, West Bengal, Bihar, Jharkhand and Orissa within the next three days.
The offshore trough running down from Gujarat coast to Kerala coast featured an upper air cyclonic circulation over the northeast Arabian Sea and adjoining Gujarat.
This may descend to lower levels to set up a low-pressure area during the next two days.
This could further rev up the proceedings, with widespread rainfall with isolated heavy to very heavy fall being forecast for south Gujarat, Konkan, Goa and coastal Karnataka.
A counterpart cyclonic circulation was spotted over northwest and adjoining west-central Bay of Bengal off the south Orissa – north Andhra coasts.
Isolated heavy rainfall is being forecast for the north eastern States, West Bengal, Sikkim and north Orissa. REPEAT IOD?
Meanwhile, several models are predicting a repeat of the positive Indian Ocean Dipole (IOD) close on the heels of the year-2007 event that was responsible for enhanced monsoon precipitation over west and central India.
The IOD is characterised by anomalous cooling of the south eastern equatorial Indian Ocean waters and a concurrent warming of the western equatorial Indian Ocean.
The suspected IOD play comes at a time when a prevailing La Nina event (colder counterpart of El Nino) is dying a slow death over the equatorial Pacific and `neutral’ conditions are expected to unravel over the equatorial Pacific.
The positive IOD touches off an active phase of the prevailing Indian monsoon, particularly when its correlation with the latter is low, and vice versa. The current active phase of the monsoon on the west coast could be the first indication that the IOD is upon us, said a meteorological expert who did not want to be identified.
IMD forecasts for the next few days said that rain or thundershowers are likely at most places over coastal and interior Karnataka, Andaman and Nicobar, Kerala, Lakshadweep and at a few places over the rest of the southern peninsula outside north coastal Andhra Pradesh where rainfall is likely to increase from Monday.
Towards the west, rain or thundershowers are likely at most places over Konkan and Goa and at many places over Madhya Maharashtra and south Gujarat and at a few places over Marathawada and the rest of Gujarat. A prevailing western disturbance is likely to bring isolated precipitation to east and west Rajasthan.
In the east, rain or thundershowers are likely at many places over West Bengal and Sikkim and at a few places over Orissa during the next 24 hours and increase thereafter. Chhattisgarh too will witness a scale-up in rainfall while other parts of northeast and central India too are bracing to get rain or thundershowers.
A western disturbance (WD) lay over eastern parts of Jammu and Kashmir but a follow-up system was waiting its turn from its current perch over north Pakistan and adjoining Jammu and Kashmir. Some meteorological experts are of the opinion that the arrival of the WD could be the trigger that the monsoon would need to switch itself on in east and central India.



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