The scorching summer heat is set to pave the way for an intense rain activity. The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has warned of a strong spell of thunderstorms, rain and hailstorm over northwestern states and issued an orange alert for the next two days.
An active western disturbance is likely to move across the northern region from May 23-26. The stormy system is likely to get powered by moisture from the Arabian Sea, as well as Bay of Bengal, which may enhance the rain activity even further. It is also expected to bring down the day temperatures by four-six degrees over northwest India during the next three days, as per IMD.
SUDDEN WEATHER CHANGE?
Scientists explain that such stormy systems are common during the pre-monsoon period, and they mostly impact the northwest India as well as northeastern states, especially amid heatwaves over the region. However, this time, there is likely to be a strong interaction with winds from the adjoining seas.
“We are expecting a significant moisture supply from the Arabian Sea. Strong southwesterly winds from the Bay of Bengal to northeast India are also prevailing. Together, they could strengthen the rain activity over the region,” senior IMD scientist Dr Soma Sen Roy told News18.
Over the next four days, people can expect rainfall at many places over northwest India with thunderstorm, lightning and occasional gusty winds from the evening of May 23 to May 26, with maximum intensity on May 24 and 25.
Rainfall could be particularly heavy over most parts of Himachal Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir-Ladakh-Gilgit-Baltistan-Muzaffarabad. Strong gusty winds reaching 50-60 kmph are likely over Uttarakhand, which may then advance to Punjab, Haryana-Chandigarh-Delhi on May 24; and over west Uttar Pradesh on May 25.
The forecast suggests a probability of hailstorm over Punjab and Haryana, west Uttar Pradesh and north Rajasthan in the next two-three days. Hailstorm is also very likely at isolated places over Bihar, West Bengal and Sikkim on May 23 and 24. The strong winds and hailstorm could damage vulnerable structures, as the weather department has urged local administration officials to prepare accordingly.
The impact would also be seen over parts of northeast India, which could also see fairly widespread rainfall with thunderstorms, lightning and gusty winds over Assam, Meghalaya, Nagaland, Manipur, Mizoram and Tripura over the next four days.
RELIEF FROM HEAT
The latest forecast also signals at much-needed relief from heat, as large parts of India sizzle with maximum temperatures hovering at 40-45°C. Delhi recorded its highest temperature of 44.9℃ at Ridge on Monday, while it touched 46.5℃ in Jhansi, west Uttar Pradesh – the highest for Northwest India.
A heat wave currently prevails in some parts of Delhi and south Haryana, southwest Uttar Pradesh, north Madhya Pradesh and east Jharkhand.
“But as the rainy system moves, it is likely to bring down the day temperatures by four-six degrees over northwest India during the next three days,” says IMD. There will be no major change in temperatures after that.
MONSOON ON TRACK
While the rain arrival is in time for the monsoon, it is not the monsoon system.
According to IMD, the southwest monsoon is likely to make its onset over the Kerala coast around June 4 – four days later than its normal date. The forecast carries a model error of ± 4 days.
Currently, the conditions are favourable for further advance of southwest monsoon into some more parts of south Bay of Bengal, Andaman Sea and Andaman and Nicobar Islands during the next two days.