Good Monsoon Rains: September is a pivotal month when it comes to the monsoon season in Madhya Pradesh. It’s the time when the state relies on rain to fulfil its remaining quota after the monsoon months of July and August. However, this year’s forecast is causing some concern. In this article, we will delve into the past three years of September monsoons and examine why this year’s prediction of a 50% reduction in rainfall is causing apprehension among meteorologists and farmers alike.
Good Monsoon Rains: Past Trends: A Glimpse at the Last 3 Years
1. 2022: A Monsoon to Remember
The monsoon in September 2022 was a sight to behold. The state received abundant rainfall, exceeding the average by 20%. Farmers rejoiced as their fields were well-nourished, and water reservoirs were replenished. The meteorological department had predicted a good monsoon season, and it certainly lived up to expectations.
2. 2021: A Balanced Monsoon
In contrast to 2022, September 2021 saw a more balanced monsoon. Rainfall was close to the average, ensuring that the state’s agricultural needs were met adequately. Although it wasn’t as spectacular as the previous year, it was still a relief for the farming community.
3. 2020: A Dry Spell
September 2020, however, was a different story. The state faced a dry spell, with rainfall falling significantly below the expected average. Farmers encountered hardships as their crops struggled to survive. It was a stark reminder of the unpredictability of monsoons.
Good Monsoon Rains: The Concern for 2023
Good Monsoon Rains: As we look ahead to September 2023, meteorologists are raising concerns about the monsoon’s performance. The early signs are not promising, and a crucial factor is the absence of a strong weather system. Dr. Vedprakash Singh, a senior meteorologist, points out that the system is expected to become active in the Bay of Bengal only around 4 to 5 September. A low-pressure area may form from 6th to 7th September, potentially bringing moderate to heavy rainfall to the eastern part of the state. However, this system’s longevity is uncertain, and it may remain active only from 18 to 19 September.
Rainfall Deficit: A Cause for Alarm
The state has already faced a rainfall deficit in the months leading up to September. From June 1 to August 31, Madhya Pradesh received an average of 26.06 inches of rain, falling short of the expected 31.16 inches. This deficit amounts to 16%, and it’s even more pronounced in the eastern and western parts of the state, with 13% and 20% shortfalls, respectively.
According to the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) in Bhopal, monsoon officially entered the state on June 24. While there was initial promise, July and August saw less rainfall than usual. Even if the quota of 158 mm (approximately 6 inches) of rain is met in September, many districts are still likely to experience less rainfall than normal.
Good Monsoon Rains: A Glimpse of the Recent Weather
To understand the current conditions better, let’s take a look at the weather in the last 24 hours:
The state experienced intense heat in many districts, including the capital city, Bhopal. There were reports of light drizzles in some areas due to local weather systems, but the overall effect of heat and humidity was felt across the state.
In Gwalior, the temperature soared to 37.4 degrees Celsius, marking the highest day temperature of the season. Other cities, including Damoh, Rewa, Satna, Sidhi, Khajuraho, and Tikamgarh, also recorded temperatures above 36 degrees Celsius. Ujjain, Shivpuri, Guna, Mandla, and Jabalpur experienced temperatures reaching 35 degrees Celsius. Even in cities like Bhopal, Betul, Chhindwara, Narsinghpur, Sagar, Seoni, and many more, the temperature remained at or above 30 degrees Celsius.
The Ongoing Rainfall Deficit
The continuous lack of rainfall in the state has been a cause for concern. The deficit is reflected in the declining figures of normal rainfall. As of now, Madhya Pradesh has received 16% less rainfall than what is considered normal.
Narsinghpur has been the exception, receiving the highest rainfall in the state, with measurements exceeding 41 inches. Seoni, Mandla-Jabalpur, and Dindori have also seen substantial rainfall, with figures exceeding 37.53, 35, and 34 inches, respectively.
In several districts, including Indore, Anuppur, Balaghat, Chhindwara, Panna, Sagar, Shahdol, Damoh, and Rajgarh, the rainfall deficit remains between 15% and 20%. These numbers paint a grim picture for the agricultural community, as many crops are heavily dependent on September rains.
The Farmer’s Predicament
Farmers across the state are anxious as they watch the skies for signs of rain. With a looming deficit in rainfall, their crops are at risk. Many farmers had sown crops like soybean, maize, urad, and moong expecting the timely arrival of monsoon, but their hopes are diminishing with each passing day of dry weather.
The situation is particularly critical for the soybean crop, which requires sufficient rainfall in September to ensure a good harvest. In the absence of timely rains, soybean cultivation is at risk, and this could have a cascading effect on the state’s economy.
The Way Forward
While the current situation may seem bleak, there is still hope. Weather patterns can be unpredictable, and there’s a possibility of a late surge in rainfall. However, the odds are not in favor of a miraculous turnaround, given the current meteorological data.
In such times, it’s essential for farmers to consider water conservation and irrigation techniques to mitigate the impact of the rainfall deficit. Government agencies should also be prepared to provide assistance and support to farmers in distress.
As we keep our fingers crossed and hope for the best, it’s evident that the monsoon in September 2023 will play a pivotal role in determining the fate of agriculture and water resources in Madhya Pradesh. The state eagerly awaits the skies to open up and quench the parched land, but only time will reveal what September has in store.