Monsoon reaches Kerala

NEW DELHI: After a year of drought, the eagerly-awaited seasonal monsoon rains have reached Kerala, the weather office said on Monday much to the cheer of the farming community.

"South-west monsoon has reached Kerala and we expect it to cover coastal Karnataka within a day," Ajit Tyagi, Director General, India Meteorological Department (IMD) said here.

However, he said due to a storm brewing in the Arabian Sea, the progression of the monsoon is expected to be along the western coast and interior parts of the peninsula would get rains later.

"There is a depression in the Arabian Sea which could develop into a cyclone and affect the progression of monsoon in the interior parts," Tyagi said.

As per current analysis, the depression which may develop into a cyclone could hit parts of coastal Gujarat and Karachi, weather scientists said.

Good rainfall this year could help increase farm produce which in turn is expected to bring down inflation.

The onset of monsoon over Kerala sets the stage for the four-month rainy season that powers the trillion-dollar economy with agriculture as its prime engine of growth.

Last month, the IMD had forecast normal monsoon rains for the season beginning June 1.

The normal monsoon forecast is expected to bring cheers to over 235 million farmers, who had faced drought last year due to failed monsoon.

A good monsoon could help in sowing of rice, sugarcane, soybean and corn and lead to a rebound in the agricultural output.(PTI)

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