Business Standard

Various parts of country to continue getting on-off rains till Apr 12: IMD

How far and how much with the next round of rains impact the standing crop is under realm of speculation

Delhi rains, Rainfall

Vehicles ply on roads during rains, in New Delhi (Photo: PTI)

Sanjeeb Mukherjee

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Many parts of India will continue to get isolated rainfall off and on till April 12, the India Meteorological Department (IMD) said on Thursday in an extended range forecast for the remaining days of March and early April.

This could have further impact on the ready-to-be-harvested crops which have already suffered considerable damages due to the relentless rains in March. The harvest of the standing wheat crop could get delayed due to the rains.

According to the IMD, till March 29, the country received around 26 per cent more rainfall with Central India getting the maximum 202 per cent more than normal rainfall between March 1 and 29 followed by Southern Peninsular India and East and North-East India.

"Overall, rainfall activity is likely to be above normal over south Peninsular and central India and below normal over rest parts of the country," the met said in its forecast for weather between April 6-12 while between March 30 and April 6, scattered rainfall is expected over Central India, North-West and East India in various days.

Last week, Dr Gyanendra Singh, Director of ICAR's Indian Institute of Wheat and Barley Research (IIWBR)-based in Karnal said that so far untimely rains and hailstorm in several major growing areas might have damaged just around three percent of total standing wheat crop but it isn’t big enough to cause any serious dent in the expected 112 million tonnes of production in FY24.

Separately, the Chairman of Food Corporation of India (FCI), Ashok K Meena, told reporters that the agency is on track to achieve the targeted 34 million tonnes of procurement in FY24 on the back of a strong start to the purchase season from Madhya Pradesh.

He also denied that wheat procurement will be delayed anywhere in the country due to the rains and said that FCI centres will open on time but it depends on the farmers whether they would delay bringing the crop to ensure that it is properly dried to get best value.

"As of now the ground situation is that at best the loss due to recent rains and hailstorm in wheat growing areas is not more than three percent but despite that we are totally on track to reach the estimated 112 million tonnes of production in Fy-24," Singh had told Business Standard.

He said that his institute has communicated the same to the top government authorities as well.

IIWBR is among the country’s foremost centres for research and crop development on wheat and regularly tracks the crop progress from its main production zones.

Singh, however, cautioned about the next round of rains and hailstorm predicted in the Northern states on March 29 and 30, saying that it could have a negative impact on the crop that has been already lodged in water.

"I’m worried about the next round of rains and hailstorm predicted for March 29 and 30and am praying to the God that it should not be harsh on the farmers," Singh had said.

How far and how much with the next round of rains impact the standing crop is under realm of speculation.

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First Published: Mar 30 2023 | 11:37 PM IST

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