Thunderstorms in 25 Odisha districts till July 24; heavy rainfall on July 30 & 31

The deficient rainfall in the State has spiked to 27 per cent as on today (July 20). The big concern is all districts, except one, in the State have slipped into deficient zone

Bhubaneswar: With the Monsoon rainfall playing hide and seek game in Odisha, the high humidity level in the atmosphere will act as the trigger factor for  the thunderstorms to rule the skies from this (July 20) evening (4PM onwards) to early morning tomorrow (July 21) in the districts of Balasore, Keonjhar, Mayurbhanj, Nayagarh, Gajapati, Boudh and Bargarh.

The weather models quite clearly hint at moderate rainfall in the southern districts of Malkangiri, Koraput and Nabrangpur today (July 20). It says light rainfall along with thunderstorm activities are set to hit across the State till July 24, except the coastal districts.

As exactly 56 days are left of this year’s South West Monsoon, there seems no good news for Odisha on the rainfall front.

The month of July is now in its last days. The deficient rainfall in the State has spiked to 27 per cent as on today (July 20). The big concern is all districts, except one, in the State have slipped into deficient zone. Now, Odisha has to heavily bank on rainfall in August to see normal farming activities. Because, Monsoon usually withdraws from Odisha by mid-September (14-15).

The weather models enthuse no great confidence for the State to achieve a surplus rainfall this month. Weather predictions show rainfall activity to  cover the entire State from July 25, but widespread heavy rainfall will be witnessed only on July 30 and 31.

As per the rainfall data available with the IMD here, Odisha till July 20 has received 314mm rainfall visi-a-vis the normal rainfall of 429.4mm in the month till July 20. The disconcerting facts are: for the week ending on July 17, as many as eight districts have recorded a deficient rainfall of near 100 per cent (91-98). The districts are Angul, Boudh, Deogarh, Jajpur, Kandhmal, Nuapada, Puri, Sambalpur and Subarnapur. The list shows Western Odisha is in the grip of acute water stress for farming activities. And a drought like situation exists with regard to farming activities only.

It is significant to mention here that agricultural drought is different from full-fledged drought. In agricultural drought, the rainfall deficit has an effect on cultivation activities. If a drought sets off a drop in general water level, whereby crisis will be experienced at drinking water level and availability of fodder stock for the cattle, then the disaster code defines it as full-fledged drought.

Significantly, in year 2018, the month of July had witnessed a 6 per cent surplus rainfall courtesy heightened rainfall activities in the last week of July, especially July 22 -25. The month of August had also recorded 10 per cent surplus rainfall in 2018.

However, given the weak monsoon current and predictions for the week ahead, July this Monsoon may end in deficient category.