Monsoon On Course

New Delhi, May 30 | Updated: May 31 2004, 05:30am hrs
Union finance minister P Chidambaram would be happy to note that monsoon is progressing well and may in fact arrive earlier than expected.

Sattelite maps of the US-based National Center for Environmental Protection (NCEP) and the Center for Ocean-Land-Atmosphere Studies (COLA) show clouds advancing up to southern Gujarat and some northern parts of the peninsular India by June 4.

The average cumulative rainfall over the country in the period March 1 to June has been over 16 per cent of the normal.

Till the week ended May 19, there have been good monsoon rains in Andaman & Nicobar islands, Lakshadweep, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Pondicherry, Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka. Orissa, Chhattisgarh and Vidhrabha have also had good rains as a result. The entire north-east, north Bengal and Sikkim have had good showers and the spillover effect has been felt in Bihar and Jharkhand also.

South-west monsoon had arrived on the mainland on May 16/17, two weeks earlier than the schedule. It entered north-east first and then entered the southern peninsula. The cyclonic system created over Bay of Bengal around May 16 facilitated the early arrival of monsoon.