Monsoon picks up momentum, Kharif sowing expected to speed up

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New Delhi, June 21 (IANS) The India Meteorological Department (IMD) on Friday said that the southwest monsoon has picked up momentum as it has advanced into some more parts of Maharashtra, remaining parts of Vidarbha, and some parts of Madhya Pradesh.

The IMD said that monsoon has also moved into more areas of Chhattisgarh and Odisha, some parts of Gangetic West Bengal, remaining parts of sub-Himalayan West Bengal and some parts of Jharkhand.

“Conditions are favourable for further advance of the southwest monsoon into some more parts of Gujarat, remaining parts of Maharashtra, some more parts of Madhya Pradesh, Odisha, West Bengal, Jharkhand, Bihar and some parts of Uttar Pradesh during the next 3-4 days,” the IMD said.

This represents good news for the economy as the Kharif sowing which had slowed with the stalling of the monsoon will now pick up speed.

The onset of the monsoon over Kerala this year was two days ahead of the usual date and over northeast, six days in advance.

Thereafter, the northward progress of monsoon was gradual, and it covered Kerala, Karnataka, Rayalaseema, Goa & Telangana; most parts of southern Maharashtra and some parts of Chhattisgarh, Odisha; most parts of sub-Himalayan West Bengal, and Sikkim, and the entire northeastern states by June 12.

However, the monsoon has not progressed after that and the ‘Northern Limit’ of monsoon on June 18 passed through Navsari, Jalgaon, Amravati, Chandrapur, Bijapur, Sukma, Malkangiri, and Vizianagaram.

The monsoon plays a key role in the Indian economy as over 50 per cent of the country’s farmland depend on rain.

The monsoon rain is also crucial for recharging the country’s reservoirs and aquifers from which the water can be used later in the year to irrigate crops.

India has emerged as a key exporter of foodgrains but had to resort to curbing overseas shipments of sugar, rice, wheat and onions in order to increase domestic supplies and keep prices in check due to the erratic monsoon last year which hit farm production.

A robust growth in the farm sector helps to keep inflation in check.



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