Extended forecast suggests that monsoon will arrive in Kerala around June 1, its normal onset date, said M Rajeevan, Secretary in the Ministry of Earth Sciences, on Thursday. The Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) will issue an official monsoon forecast on May 15, he said.
"Monsoon 2021 update: India MET departmentâ€™s extended range forecast suggests monsoon will arrive over Kerala on time, around 1 June. This is an early indication. India MET department official monsoon forecast on 15 May and rainfall forecast update around May 31 (sic)," he tweeted.
The southwest monsoon, which brings nearly 75% of the country's rainfall, is expected to be normal this year, the IMD said.
The Long Period Average will be 98% with an error margin of plus and minus 5%, it said.
The state has been seeing some rainfall in recent weeks. The weekly summary report in the IMD for the week ending on May 5 lists excess rainfall in six districts including Thiruvananthapuram, Ernakulam, Idukki, Kottayam, Kollam and Pathanamthitta. Deficient rainfall was reported in Alappuzha, Kannur, Palakkad and Wayanad districts.
The nowcast dated May 7 predicts a thunderstorm accompanied by lightning and gusty wind likely at one or two places over Kerala from May 7 to 10. It also said that the seasonal southwest monsoon rainfall is most likely to be normal (98%). The prediction comes as a relief to the state, which has witnessed consecutive floods during the monsoon seasons of 2018 and 2019. There has been a lot of concern about the state facing another bout of heavy rainfall and floods in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic.
In August 2020, Pettimudi in Idukki witnessed a landslide due to heavy rainfall, which resulted in the death of 52 people while 19 others were reported missing. The same day, an Air India flight crashed in the Kozhikode airport of Malappuram, killing 18 people and injuring several others.
Read: The devastating Pettimudi landslides in Kerala: Were vulnerabilities ignored?
(With PTI inputs)