Delayed Monsoon retreat plays havoc in hilly states of India.
This year the monsoon has ended but many parts of India is experiencing unprecedented rainfall. In 21 days of October 19 states received more than excess rainfall. Uttarakhand received 546% more rainfall, Delhi has received 339%, Bihar has received 234% and Uttar Pradesh has received 193% more rainfall. The situation in Uttarakhand is precarious and to date, the death toll has reached 68. Uttarakhand used to receive 33 mm of rainfall in October whereas it has received 202 mm which has aggravated the situation.
The monsoon withdrawal from the Indian Subcontinent usually happened by September 15 but this time it was delayed till October 8 when the monsoon started to retreat. However, two deep depressions, one in the Arabian Sea and one in the Bay of Bengal have delayed this withdrawal.
Global Warming impacting both water and land
The waters of the Arabian Sea are warmer than the Bay of Bengal. The ocean system around the globe regularly transfers heat from one system to another. This time the Pacific region has transferred heat to the Indian Ocean and the waters of the Arabian Sea and Bay of Bengal has become warmer leading to this delay in Monsoon.
Global warming is playing havoc on the Indian subcontinent. Cloudbursts have become a common occurrence in the hilly regions of Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh and Kerala. Coupled with environmental degradation, landslides of mammoth proportions are literally wiping out complete villages in Uttarakhand and Beed regions of Maharashtra.
Snow and rains forecasted in hilly areas
The warming of the waters of the Arabian Sea has made the Western coast of India vulnerable to cyclones. Cyclones in the Arabian Sea were a rarity but this year already three cyclones have struck the western coast of India. Metropolitan cities like Mumbai, Chennai have experienced flooding of gargantuan proportion and lessons have not been learnt. Mangrove forests on the shores act as a natural defence against erosion by the sea. Developmental activities have reduced mangrove cover and exposed the coastal regions to erosion.
The weather department has forecast snow in the hilly regions of the Himachal and Uttaranchal and Kashmir. A western depression will also provoke widespread rains in Punjab, Haryana and eastern Rajasthan. The skies will clear on October 25 and it will also herald the beginning of the winter season which the met department is saying will be intense and long this year.