Monsoon: Five northeast states receive excess, 3 scarce rainfall


Guwahati/Agartala, Jul 22, 2020, IANS

BY SUJIT CHAKRABORTY

Amid the peak of the four-month-long monsoon, five of the eight north-eastern states, including Assam, have received excess rain and the remaining three reported deficiencies.

According to the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) scientists, the erratic monsoon is likely to affect both kharif and rabi crops in the region.

As per the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD), Sikkim has recorded plus 95 per cent rain, Meghalaya plus 52 per cent, Assam plus 20 per cent, Arunachal Pradesh plus 16 per cent and Tripura plus 2 per cent, whereas Manipur has recorded minus 46 per cent rain, Mizoram minus 32 per cent and Nagaland minus 27 per cent.

According to IMD officials, the June-September southwest monsoon is in full-swing in most parts of the mountainous north-eastern region.

IMD scientist Rajan Phukan said as the monsoon trough is active along the foothills of Himalayas, Sikkim, Assam, Arunachal Pradesh and Meghalaya were experiencing good and heavy monsoon rain.

"Since Wednesday, due to the marginal shift of the monsoon trough, Manipur, Tripura and other north-eastern states might witness more rain. When the monsoon trough would be along the Bay of Bengal region, the rainfall would be lesser in the area," Phukan told IANS over phone.

He said since June 1 and till Wednesday, Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Meghalaya, Sikkim and Tripura recorded 894.4 mm, 1,012.7 mm, 2,278.7 mm, 1,423 mm and 763.2 mm rain, respectively, against the normal of 743.9 mm, 872.5 mm, 1,499.9 mm, 728.6 mm and 746 mm.

During this period (June 1 to July 22), Manipur witnessed the highest rain shortfall by recording 373.8 mm against the normal 693 mm, while Mizoram registered 505.6 mm rain against 742 mm, and Nagaland 416.2 mm against 572.2 mm.

According to the disaster management officials, the monsoon floods and landslides have claimed 114 lives in Assam, 10 in Arunachal Pradesh, seven in Meghalaya and one in Tripura.

Besides large cropland, the floods also damaged infrastructure, including roads, embankments, bridges, culverts, houses and other establishments in most northeastern states, specially Assam.

For over a month, the flood situation in Assam has remained grim. On Wednesday, over 25 lakh people in 2,409 villages in 25 of the 33 districts were marooned by flood. Western Assam has been the worst affected.

According to the Assam State Disaster Management Authority (ASDMA) officials, of the 25 lakh affected people in Assam, around 16 lakh are in five western districts -- Goalpara (458,020), Barpeta (352,587), Morigaon (314,955), Dhubri (277,612), and South Sakmara (179,700).

Officials of the Forest Department and the ASDMA said floods had killed as many as 120 animals and 147 animals rescued.

The 90 per cent of the world famous Kaziranga National Park, home to more than 2,200 one-horned Indian rhinoceros, remained inundated. Besides the Kaziranga National Park, located on the edge of the eastern Himalayan biodiversity hotspots of Golaghat and Nagaon districts, the Manas, the R.G. Orang and the Tinsukia national parks, the Pabitora and Tinsukia wildlife sanctuaries in Assam were also badly affected.

Around 14 lakh domestic animals and over 8 lakh poultry were affected by flood in Assam.

(Sujit Chakraborty can be contacted at [email protected])

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