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India to get average monsoon this year, zero chance of drought: Skymet

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India to get average monsoon this year, zero chance of drought: Skymet

Monsoon rains are expected to be average in 2018 with ‘zero chance’ of a drought, the country’s only private weather forecasting agency Skymet Weather has said.

Monsoon rains are expected to be 100 per cent of the long-term average, Skymet tweeted. Average, or normal, rainfall is defined as between 96 per cent and 104 per cent of the long period average (LPA) – a 50-year average which is around 887 millimetres for the entire four-month season beginning June.

The  government’s India Meteorological Department will come out with its preliminary monsoon forecast in mid-April but has indicated that the chances of an El Nino disrupting monsoon are slim. The El Nino, an abnormal warming of the ocean surface in central and eastern equatorial Pacific, is usually associated with weak monsoons.

“2018 is likely to remain normal at 100 per cent [with an error margin of +/-5 per cent] of the long period average [LPA] of 887 mm for the four-month period from June to September,” said Skymet.

“India is most likely to witness normal annual Monsoon rains at 100 per cent of the Long Period Average (LPA),” Skymet Weather said in a statement. “The onset month of June and the withdrawal month of September give a promising picture in terms of good countrywide rainfall distribution. Meanwhile, July and August may see comparatively lesser rainfall. To be precise, August would be a shade poorer than July,” it added.

So, while the rains would be ‘normal’ overall, farmers may have some reason for worry: June is likely to receive excess rainfall, but there is, on average, a 30 per cent chance that the key months of July and August would see ‘below normal’ – more than 10% deficit in their normal quotas – rains. July and August cover the crucial sowing and post-sowing season. These months bring in half the monsoon rains and are crucial for a good harvest.

In terms of geographical risk, Skymet expected that Peninsular India along with major portion of northeast India was likely to be at “higher risk of being rain deficient throughout the season”.

About the pre-monsoon heat across the country, Skymet said it “is a positive indicator and points towards normal monsoon”.

“Similar conditions are presently prevailing across the country. In fact, weathermen are of the view that pre-monsoon season would be slightly below normal, paving the way for intense heat before the onset of monsoon.”

Last year, India got 95 per cent of its normal monsoon quota. June and July got more than their usual quota while August and September saw significant deficits.

Skymet also said that there is nil possibility of a big nationwide drought or deficient rainfall when the total cumulative seasonal rainfall across the country falls below 90 per cent of LPA. There is 80 per cent chance of the southwest monsoon to be normal (between 96-104 per cent of the LPA) this year.

Besides ‘normal’, Skymet drew up three more scenarios likely for the season, ranging from below normal to excess rainfall with an error margin of plus-minus 5 per cent.

There are 20 per cent chances of above normal which is between 105 to 110 per cent of LPA.

Chances of normal, which is seasonal rainfall between 96 to 104 per cent of LPA, are 55 per cent.

Below normal rainfall, which is between 90 to 95 per cent of LPA, are 20 per cent.

There is “0 per cent chance of drought or seasonal rainfall that is less than 90 per cent of LPA”, the forecaster said.

Giving month-wise details, Skymet said that monsoon rains in June would be 111% of the Long Period Average (LPA) with 90 per cent chance of it being normal. June gets around 164 millimetres of rainfall.

July rains are expected to be 97 per cent of the LPA with 70 per cent chance of it being normal. The country receives around 289 millimetres of rainfall in July, which is also the highest in the four-month monsoon season that starts from June. The month is also crucial for sowing of most kharif crops.

In August, Skymet said that country is expected to receive rains equivalent to 96 per cent of LPA with 65 per cent chance of them being normal. The country receives 262 millimeters of rainfall in August.

In September, the country is expected to receive rains around 101% of LPA with 80 per cent chance of them being normal. India gets around 173 millimeters of rainfall in the last month of the monsoon season.

Almost 70 per cent of India’s annual precipitation comes in the months of June to September. The southwest monsoon is critical not only for agriculture growth as less than half of the cultivable land is under irrigation, but also boosts the general economy and helps in rejuvenating reservoirs and groundwater sources.

The 2017 southwest monsoon season India received ‘below normal’ rainfall at 95 per cent of the LPA as against the IMD’s forecast of rains to be normal at 98 per cent of the LPA with a model error of plus and minus 4 per cent. Skymet had predicted a ‘below normal’ monsoon in 2017.

The monsoon started well in June and July but there was an extended break from August till early September which pulled down the total cumulative seasonal rainfall. Around 216 districts in the country received deficient rainfall in 2017 southwest monsoon season. Three state governments of Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan covering 270 tehsils in 52 districts officially declared drought.

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Rameshwaram Cafe blast: Karnataka Home Minister reveals how police inputs helped NIA arrest accused

The blast at the cafe occurred during lunch hour on March 1 at around 1 pm, which left 10 people injured

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Karnataka Home Minister G Parameshwara said on Saturday that inquiry teams were attempting to determine whether the two suspects in the Rameshwaram cafe blast who were detained by the NIA had any connections to other terrorist groups. He also praised the state police for their contributions, some of which resulted in their arrest. Meanwhile, the suspects have been placed in 10-day police custody on remand.

The Karnataka police and the NIA have both performed incredibly well. In the beginning, they obtained all of the CCTV footage and monitored one of the accused, which helped in their arrest, he said.

The minister disclosed how the NIA was able to arrest the accused, which was possible because of a tip from the police.

He said the police shared very good inputs with the NIA, like the cap the accused was wearing, which was purchased from Chennai, and the telephone number he had given in the shop.

According to G Parameshwara, the services were also looking for connections between them and other crimes related to terrorism. He said that they might be attempting to flee from West Bengal to Bangladesh, where they were apprehended by the NIA.

He said the team is investigating the real motive behind the blast and their involvement with other terror outfits (ISIS), as these two (accused) are supposed to be involved in the earlier Shivamogga blast and kept running for three to four days ahead of getting arrested in this case, Parameshwara stated.

Since they were apprehended in West Bengal, a state that shares a border with Bangladesh, it’s possible that they wanted to leave the country. However, currently, they don’t have any precise information on this. He continued, They will discover in due course if there is someone assisting from that side (Bangladesh).

Meanwhile, the blast at the cafe occurred during lunch hour on March 1 at around 1 pm, which left 10 people injured. On March 3, the NIA took over the case from the police and announced a reward of Rs 10 lakh for any information regarding the two accused.

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PM Modi, President Murmu pay tribute to Jallianwala Bagh massacre victims

On the anniversary of the Jallianwala Bagh massacre PM Modi, President Murmu paid tribute to those who were killed in the incident.

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi today paid tribute to the victims of the Jallianwala Bagh massacre. In Punjab’s Amritsar on April 13, 1919, hundreds of nonviolent protestors were shot at random by British forces.

Taking to social media X, formerly Twitter, PM Modi said, on behalf of the entire country, he pays his deepest respects to all the brave martyrs of the Jallianwala Bagh massacre.

President Droupadi Murmu also paid respects to those who gave their lives in the Jallianwala Bagh massacre for the sake of the country as she said that their martyrdom will continue to inspire future generations. 

The President said on X, she pays tribute  to all the freedom fighters at Jallianwala Bagh who gave their all for the country. The people of this country will always be grateful to all the wonderful people who gave their life in support of Swaraj, she added. The president wrote in Hindi on X that she is confident that the spirit of patriotism of those martyrs will always inspire the coming generations.

Union Home Minister Amit Shah, said, Jallianwala Bagh is a living symbol of the cruelty and inhumanity of the British rule

Tribute to the valiant martyrs of Jallianwala Bagh who made an invaluable contribution to the country’s freedom movement, he wrote on X in Hindi.

Shah continued saying, a living example of the brutality and inhumanity of British rule is Jallianwala Bagh. This massacre ignited the revolutionary fire that had been dormant in the hearts of the people, turning the independence movement into a popular battle. He said, the lives of the dignified people of Jallianwala Bagh serve as a constant source of inspiration for selflessness and devotion to the country first.

Union Defence Minister Rajnath Singh expressed gratitude for the martyrs’ extraordinary bravery and selflessness.

He wrote on X, remembering the martyrs who were killed on this day in 1919 in Jallianwala Bagh, Amritsar. I honor their extraordinary bravery and selflessness. He also said their sacrifice will never be forgotten.

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Tejashwi Yadav releases RJD’s manifesto, promises airports in 5 Bihar cities

Tejashwi Yadav said his party is making 24 promises to the people of the nation and Bihar.

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Former Bihar deputy chief minister Tejashwi Yadav unveiled the Rashtriya Janata Dal’s Lok Sabha election manifesto on Saturday morning, pledging the construction of five new airports in the state. Along with releasing Parivartan Patra, the political heir and son of RJD founder Lalu Yadav pledged Rs1 lakh annually to sisters from low-income families on Raksha Bandhan.

In the presence of senior RJD leaders, Tejashwi Yadav unveiled the document and said that his party had committed 24 commitments to both the national and Bihar citizen.

He said, they have released Parivartan Patra available. Twenty-four jan vachan (public promises) have been brought up for 2024. These 24 jan vachan are our promises, which we will keep, the speaker said.

Tejashwi Yadav said that his party will see to it that five new airports are built in Bihar to improve connectivity, should the INDIA bloc secure a majority at the Centre.

For better connectivity in Bihar, they are going to build 5 new airports in the state, in Purnea, Bhagalpur, Muzaffarpur, Gopalganj and Raxaul, he said. Yadav also pledged to give Bihar special status. They will implement OPS (Old Pension Scheme) and we will provide special status to Bihar, he said. The former deputy CM promised to eradicate unemployment in the nation.

People will begin to be released from unemployment on August 15th. The process of providing jobs will begin on August 15th, if their government is elected, he stated.

Every year on Raksha Bandhan, they will provide their sisters who live in poor families with Rs 1 lakh. Gas cylinders would be available for Rs 500, he continued.

The RJD leader assured young people all over the nation of one crore jobs.

He further said, One crore youth across the country will receive government jobs if our INDIA alliance is elected to power. Our greatest opponent right now is unemployment, yet the BJP did not discuss this. Although they had pledged to provide 2 crore jobs, we carry out our word, he said.

On April 19, voting will start for the seven-phase Lok Sabha elections. On June 4, there will be a counting.


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