Even as apprehensions of below-normal rains loom large, the south-west monsoon is on its back foot in Kerala.
According to the meteorological centre in Thiruvananthapuram, in the first 10 days of the monsoon, Kerala has got rainfall equivalent to 56% less than the long period average for the same period.
Except Kochi airport and Piravam, the rainfall in other regions was moderate or less. The highest rainfall of 7 cm was noted in Kochi airport. Malappuram and Palakkad in the north and Idukky, Kottayam and Alapuzha districts in the south received moderate rains on Monday and Tuesday. While Idukky is the country’s spice bowl, in terms of pepper, cardamom and nutmeg cultivation, Kottayam is the heartland of rubber plantations.
A daily bulletin by the meteorological centre says that isolated places in the state would receive heavy rains from Friday morning and continue through the weekend. The south-west monsoon had hit Kerala on June 5, four days after the expected date of scheduled onset. It is counted to reach Mumbai in a week and Delhi by early July.
The Met office has this season forecast a deficient monsoon, which has been keeping the markets on toes. The fortunes of rice and oilseed cultivation depend heavily on rain-fed kharif season. According to the forecast, Punjab, Haryana and parts of UP are likely to receive weaker rainfall than the rest of the country.