IMD pre­dicts nor­mal mon­soon this year

DNA (Delhi) - - FRONT PAGE -

New Delhi: The coun­try will re­ceive “nor­mal” mon­soon rain­fall this year, the In­dian Me­te­o­ro­log­i­cal Depart­ment (IMD) fore­cast on Mon­day, rais­ing hopes of higher farm out­put and a boost to the rains­de­pen­dent ru­ral econ­omy.

Nearly 50% of In­dia’s cul­tivable farm area de­pend on mon­soon, mak­ing it the lifeline of the ru­ral econ­omy and the agri­cul­ture sec­tor that has been lag­ging in the over­all eco­nomic growth rate.

The mon­soon will be 97% of long pe­riod av­er­age (LPA), which is nor­mal for the sea­son, IMD di­rec­tor gen­eral KG Ramesh told re­porters. The er­ror mar­gin in the fore­cast is plus/mi­nus 5%.

He said there was “very less prob­a­bil­ity” of a de­fi­cient mon­soon. The four-month mon­soon sea­son from June to Septem­ber pro­vides about 75% of an­nual rain­fall to the coun­try.

En­thused by the Met fore­cast, Agri­cul­ture sec­re­tary SK Pat­tanayak said the coun­try’s food­grain pro­duc­tion may sur­pass this year’s record high of 277.49 mil­lion tonne.

“The nor­mal mon­soon will boost kharif sow­ing that will start from June,” Pat­tanayak said.

Over 50% of the coun­try’s pop­u­la­tion is de­pen­dent on farm­ing and about 15% of the GDP comes from agri­cul­ture and al­lied sec­tors.

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