ibnlive » India

Jul 03, 2012 at 11:24am IST

No clouds, no rain, and plenty of worry

New Delhi: India's crucial monsoon rains have been 31 per cent deficient so far but the weather office has forecast increase in rainfall for peninsular region and fall in temperature for northern region over the next four days.

With a delayed monsoon, the weather office says rainfall has been 31 per cent deficient. 83 per cent of the country, including grain-rich Punjab and Haryana, has received scanty rains.

In Patna, corn farmers are bearing the brunt of the scorching sun with no rains. The crop has all dried up. Farmers say even rice fields are drying up.

In Punjab too, the situation is as bad. The Met department says the state will have to wait for another week to get rainfall. Farmers are still waiting for the rains before they sow the crop.

The situation in Rajasthan is even worse. Five people in the state have died due to the heat. Kota saw its highest temperature in last 46 years.

But the government is still downplaying the situation. Planning Commission Deputy Chairman Montek Singha Aluwalia says it's not yet time to declare a drought.

"It’s not the date of the onset of the monsoon, it's the overall level and distribution over the next four months. You can have a situation where the monsoon is absolutely on time and then it peters up. You can have a situation where the monsoon is one week late or even 10 days late built then is healthy," Ahluwalia said.

Environmental experts say that if the monsoons do not reach by July 5, there will be a strong case of drought situation for the region. The Met department is confident they will reach within 48 hrs. Hopefully, this time the weatherman's prediction will be accurate.