The vagaries of the Monsoon is well known. Inspite of technological development in India the larger section of Indian farms are still devoid of any form of irrigation system and they largely depend on the mood of the Monsoon. The impact of the returning monsoon is mostly felt in the southern Indian peninsula.Last year also the monsoon was normal, but Marathawada is reeling under drought conditions. Some areas got shortfall and others excess. This happen almost every year in India. Interior Maharashtra being under rain shadow is adversely affected. And there is the green lobby telling us that this is because of widespread deforestation. There are elements of truth in each view, but lack of political and administrative understanding of the grand realities is adding fuel to fire. Every year from the start of the monsoon season there are dark heavy clouds sailing over interior Maharashtra, Andhra and Karnataka. These pour down devastation over West Bengal and Assam. Only after the season is over that the administration starts pushing files that the rain has been deficient in their area. Why do these states not carry out cloud seeding when the clouds are there. This would ensure water availability and if backed with strong reforestation efforts, over a period of say a decade reduce the need for cloud seeding. And hopefully it may reduce the flood damage in areas so affected.
The year 2012 was a normal monsoon year with 92% of its long term average of 87 cm. Generally, -( ) 10% deviation from the average is defined as the deficit (excess) monsoon year. It is true that last year some regions, like Punjab, Gujarat received very less (~ -25%) rainfall, but all India rainfall was only 67 mm less than its average amount. Whatever I understand the currently issued forecast is valid for the whole season over the country (not region/day specific). So it is required to properly understand the issues before we criticize someone.
Monsoon good is a booster to moderate food prices. One needs to wait till June-September to know how monsoon really performs, after all vagaries of weather and climate definitely have a say, one needs to appreciate. Use of monsoon depends on farmers’ skill in use of rains, for rain water falls on different terrains likely to be wasted into nearby seas. so care of sensible rain harvesting is vital right from dams and irrigation specialists.
Shashikant Nishant Sharma