India: Monsoon has covered nearly half of India: IMD

  • Monsoon rains have covered most parts of cane, cotton, and soybean fields in western India and some parts of rice-sowing areas in central and northern India, the country’s weather office said on Tuesday. After a limp start, the rains have covered nearly half of the country, a weather department official told Reuters on 24 Jun 19.
  • A shortfall in monsoon rains has narrowed to 37% of the long-term average against 44% between 1 Jun 19 and 19 Jun 19, the office said.
  • Conditions are now favourable for the southwest monsoon to further advance into the western state of Gujarat, and a few more parts of the central state of Madhya Pradesh and northern states of Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand, the weather office said.
  • Monsoon rains are crucial for farmers who plant cane, corn, cotton, rice and soybean in June and July, with harvests from October.
  • Poor rains have delayed planting of summer-sown crops, but experts say crop yields could be robust if rains pick up in the next two weeks.
  • Water is typically scarce in the summer months, but the situation has been particularly grim this year in western and southern states that received below-average rainfall in the 2018 monsoon season.
  • The water resources minister on Monday warned that a water shortage could cut food exports from India, which has emerged as a leading supplier of a number of food products to the world.
  • Farmers have planted summer-sown crops on 9.1 million hectares, as of 21 Jun 19, down 12.5% y/y, according to provisional data from the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare.

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