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North-East Monsoon 2011: An Overview (October 1 - December 31, 2011)
Date : Mar 12, 2012

North-East Monsoon 2011: An Overview (October 1 to December 31, 2011)*

The North-East monsoon during October-December 2011 was 48 per cent below normal as against 21 per cent above normal in the previous year. This has been the most acute deficiency in the last one decade. However, reflective of the resilience of Indian agriculture and its reduced dependence on rainfall in recent years, the adverse impact of deficient North-East monsoon during 2011 on overall agricultural production has not been severe. Production of foodgrains during 2011-12 is estimated to be at record level. However, production of pulses and oilseeds are estimated to be lower than that of the previous year. Latest available data show that rabi sowing of all crops as on February 3, 2012 was around 101 per cent of normal, though it is marginally lower than the previous year. Area sown under wheat has been higher than both its normal level and the previous year. Live storage to total storage capacity at 45 per cent as on February 23, 2012 for all the major 81 reservoirs is comfortable and comparable with the previous year.

Introduction

North-East monsoon which occurs during the period October-December coincides with rabi sowing and therefore, is an important determinant of rabi crop production. Satisfactory progress of rainfall during October-December has significant impact on the prospects of rabi crops as sowing is crucially dependent on normal rainfall. The significance of North-East monsoon can be gauged further from the fact that around 65 per cent of all pulses and around 35 per cent of oilseeds are produced during rabi season every year. In the backdrop of these factors, the article reviews the performance of North-East monsoon during October-December 2011.

North-East Monsoon 2011: Highlights

• During October-December 2011, rainfall activity over the country as a whole was subdued. Many subdivisions of the country received scanty rainfall. However, some subdivisions of the south peninsula and west received excess/normal rainfall.

• Rainfall activity over the core region of south peninsula comprising of 5 sub-divisions, viz., Coastal Andhra Pradesh, Rayalseema, Tamil Nadu & Puducherry, South Interior Karnataka and Kerala during the season as a whole was normal (96 per cent of long period average (LPA)).

• Rainfall for the country as a whole was 48 per cent, 70 per cent, and 45 per cent of LPA during October, November and December, respectively.

• Out of the above five sub-divisions, Tamil Nadu & Puducherry received excess rainfall, Rayalaseema, South Interior Karnataka and Kerela received normal rainfall, while Coastal Andhra Pradesh received deficient rainfall.

• During the season, out of the 36 meteorological subdivisions, 1 subdivision (Tamil Nadu & Puducherry) received excess rainfall, 6 received normal rainfall, 5 received deficient rainfall and 23 subdivisions received scanty rainfall. Remaining one subdivision (East Rajasthan) did not receive any rain.

• At the end of the post-monsoon season 2011, the rainfall for the country as a whole was 52 per cent of its LPA.

An Overview: North-East Monsoon 2011

At around 48 per cent below normal, deficiency in North-East monsoon during 2011 has been the most acute in the last one decade. This magnitude of deficiency in rainfall during 2011, however, has not dampened the prospects of rabi crops to the extent experienced in the past (Table1). Estimated decline in production of rabi pulses and oilseeds during 2011- 12 is not substantial given the deficiency of rainfall during the season. The production estimates for rabi foodgrains, pulses and oilseeds also have to be viewed in the context of high production during rabi 2010-11. Thus, the subdued performance of rabi 2011 can be partially attributed to base effect. This may be indicative of increased resilience of Indian agriculture and the consequent reduced dependence on rainfall in recent years.

Table 1: Performance of Rabi Crops During Years of Deficit North-East Monsoon

Years

Deviations
in North-East
Monsoon
(per cent)

Growth in
Rabi Pulses
(per cent)

Growth
in Rabi
Foodgrains
(per cent)

Growth
in Rabi
Oilseeds
(per cent)

1

2

3

4

5

2011-12

-48

-2.1

-1.3

-7.8

2008-09

-31

18.2

5.9

9.6

2007-08

-32

-11.1

2.9

-12.0

2006-07

-21

10.3

8.1

-8.3

2004-05

-11

-3.8

-1.2

19.9

2002-03

-33

-18.2

-13.1

-21.2

Source: IMD and Ministry of Agriculture, GoI.

Cumulative Rainfall

Cumulative rainfall recorded during the period October 1 to December 31, 2011 measured 65.7 mm against the normal rainfall of 127.2 mm for the season, implying a deficiency of 48 per cent. As against this, North-East monsoon during 2010 was 21 per cent above normal.

Temporal Distribution

Monthly

During October 2011, North-East monsoon over the core region of South peninsula comprising of the 5 sub-division, viz., Coastal Andhra Pradesh, Rayalseema, Tamil Nadu & Puducherry, South Interior Karnataka and Kerala was normal. Rainfall during November 2011 over the South peninsula was above normal. Tamil Nadu received about one and half times of its normal rainfall. Rayalaseema, South Interior Karnataka and Kerala received normal rainfall while Coastal Andhra Pradesh received deficient rainfall. However, rainfall over South peninsula during December 2011 was deficient. Of the 5 sub-divisions of South peninsula which receive North-East monsoon rainfall, only Kerala received excess rainfall during December 2011, while Coastal Andhra Pradesh, Rayalaseema and Tamil Nadu & Puducherry received deficient rainfall and South Interior Karnataka received scanty rainfall. For the season as a whole, rainfall during October- December 2011 over the country remained subdued (Table 2).

Table 2: Month-wise Rainfall during North-East Monsoon 2011

Month

Absolute Rainfall
(in mm)

Deviations from
Normal

Normal

Actual

October 2011

80.7

38.6

-52.2

November 2011

29.7

20.7

-30.3

December 2011

16.8

7.5

-55.4

North-East Monsoon

127.2

65.7

-48.3

Note: mm: Millimeters.
Source: India Meteorological Department.

Weekly

The weekly rainfall was below LPA for most of the weeks during the season. Except for a few days during early-December and end-December, rainfall during North-East monsoon has been below LPA (Chart I.a). Cumulatively, rainfall on a weekly basis during October- December 2011 has remained below LPA. As against this, cumulative rainfall during the corresponding period last year was above LPA since the second week of November and remained above LPA till the end of the season (Chart I.b).

Spatial Distribution

Sub-Divisions

Subdued rainfall during October-December 2011 has also been reflected in the spatial distribution of precipitation over the meteorological sub-divisions spread across the country. Of the 36 meteorological sub-divisions, cumulative rainfall was excess/normal1 in 7 sub-divisions (25 in the corresponding period last year) and deficient/scanty/no rains in 29 sub-divisions (11 last year) (Chart II, Table 3 and Statement I).

During 2002-2011, there have been five years when North-East rainfall has been deficient, namely 2002, 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2011. Of these, the deficiency has been most severe during 2011 (Table 4). Only one sub-division, i.e., Tamil Nadu and Puducherry got excess rainfall during the season. Six sub-divisions viz., Konkan and Goa, Rayalaseema, Coastal Karnataka, South Interior Karnataka, Kerala and Lakshadweep received normal rainfall. Seasonal rainfall over these sub-divisions was 96 per cent of LPA. During North-East monsoon 2011, 24 subdivisions received scanty/no rains as against only one sub-division during 2010.

1

2

Table 3: Distribution of Sub-divisions According to Category of Rainfall

Category of Rainfall

Sub-divisions

1

2

Excess

Tamil Nadu & Puducherry.

Normal

Konkan and Goa, Rayalaseema, Coastal Karnataka, South Interior Karnataka, Kerala and Lakshadweep.

Deficient

Andaman & Nicobar, Jammu & Kashmir, Madhya Maharashtra, Coastal Andhra Pradesh and North Interior Karnataka.

Scanty

Arunachal Pradesh, Assam and Meghalaya, Nagaland, Manipur, Mizoram & Tripura, Sub-Himalayan West Bengal and Sikkim, Gangetic West Bengal, Orissa, Jharkhand, Bihar, East Uttar Pradesh, West Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Haryana, Chandigarh & Delhi,
Punjab, Himachal Pradesh, West Rajasthan, West Madhaya Pradesh, East Madhaya Pradesh, Gujarat Region, Daman, Dadra & Nagar Haveli, Saurashtra & Kutch, Marathwada, Vidarbha, Chhattisgarh and Telangana.

No Rain

East Rajasthan.

Source: India Meteorological Department.


Table 4: North-East Monsoon: Cumulative Rainfall

Year

Cumulative Rainfall:
Above (+) / Below (-) Normal
(per cent)

Rainfall

Excess

Normal

Deficient

Scanty/No Rain

Number of Sub-Divisions (Total=36)

1

2

3

4

5

6

2002

-33

3

7

12

14

2003

8

9

9

6

12

2004

-11

8

10

17

1

2005

10

11

6

5

14

2006

-21

3

6

14

13

2007

-32

2

7

9

18

2008

-31

2

4

15

15

2009

8

13

10

9

4

2010

21

18

7

10

1

2011

-48

1

6

5

24

Source: India Meteorological Department.

District wise

District-wise, out of 603 meteorological districts for which data were available, 13 per cent of the meteorological districts received excess/normal rainfall and the remaining 87 per cent received deficient/scanty rainfall during the season (Statement II). The corresponding figures for the previous year were 60 per cent and 40 per cent, respectively.

Reservoir Status

The Central Water Commission monitors total live water storage in 81 major reservoirs of the country, having full reservoir level of 151.77 billion cubic meters (BCM) that accounts for around 67 percent of the total reservoir capacity of the country. Due to good Southwest monsoon, reservoir position at the beginning of rabi season during 2011 was much higher than that during the previous year. However, it was lower than the previous year at the end of the North-East monsoon season (Table 5). As on February 23, 2012 total live storage in these 81 major reservoirs was 45 per cent of the full reservoir level (FRL) as compared with 51 per cent a year ago.

Table 5: Reservoir Status

Status

September 30

December 31

2010

2011

2010

2011

1

2

3

4

5

Total Live Storage (BCM)

114.45

131.49

104.68

94.38

Percentage of Live Capacity at FRL

75

87

69

62

Note: BCM – Billion Cubic Meters; FRL – Full Reservoir Level.
Source: Central Water Commission.

Progress of Sowing

Area coverage under rabi crops in 2011-12 was marginally lower than the corresponding period last year. This reflected deficient rainfall during October- December 2011. Sowing of all crops during rabi (as on February 3, 2012) was 101.3 per cent of normal level and marginally lower than the previous year (Table 6).

Estimates of Agricultural Production: 2011-12

Production of foodgrains during 2011-12, as per the Second Advance Estimates, is estimated at 250.4 million tonnes, 2.3 per cent higher than foodgrains production of 244.8 million tonnes during 2010-11. The increase in production of foodgrains can be attributed to the estimated increase in production of wheat and rice. This is significant given record production of foodgrains during 2010-11. However, production of other sub-categories of foodgrains, i.e., coarse cereals and pulses; and oilseeds are estimated to decline during 2011-12. Major commercial crops, namely, cotton, sugarcane and jute & mesta are also estimated to
witness increased production during the year (Table 7).

Table 6: Rabi Sowing - 2011-12

(Million hectares)

Crop Name

Normal
Area

As on February 3

% of
2011

% of
Normal

2012

2011

1

2

3

4

5

6

Foodgrains

50.7

52.5

53.2

98.7

103.6

 Rice

4.4

2.2

2.6

84.6

50.0

 Wheat

27.7

29.6

29.5

100.3

106.9

Coarse

         

Cereals

6.3

5.9

6.1

96.7

93.7

Pulses

12.3

14.7

15.0

98.0

119.5

Oilseed

9.5

8.6

9.2

93.5

90.5

All- Crops

60.2

61.0

62.4

97.8

101.3

Source: Crops & TMOP Divisions, DAC.


Table 7: Agricultural Production - 2011-12

(Million Tonnes)

Crop

2009-10
Final
Estimates

2010-11
Final
Estimates

2011-12
2nd
Advance
Estimates

Percentage
Variations
2011-12

1

2

3

4

5

Foodgrains

218.1

244.8

250.4

2.3

 Rice

89.1

96.0

102.8

7.1

 Wheat

80.8

86.9

88.3

1.6

Coarse Cereals

33.6

43.7

42.1

-3.7

Pulses

14.7

18.2

17.3

-4.9

Oilseeds

24.9

32.5

30.5

-6.2

Cotton #

24.0

33.0

34.1

3.3

Jute & Mesta # #

11.8

10.6

11.6

9.4

Sugarcane (Cane)

292.3

342.4

347.9

1.6

# : Lakh bales of 170 kgs. each
# #: Lakh bales of 180 kgs. each

Conclusion

The North-East monsoon during October- December 2011 was 48 per cent below normal as against 21 percent above normal in the previous year. This has been the most acute deficiency in the last one decade. However, reflective of the resilience of Indian agriculture, its reduced dependence on rainfall in recent years and on the back of normal South-West monsoon and improved soil moisture condition, the adverse impact of deficient North-East monsoon during 2011 on overall agricultural production has not been severe. The progress of rabi sowing, so far in the season, has been satisfactory. Production of foodgrains during 2011- 12 is estimated to be at a record level. Against this backdrop, agriculture and allied sector is expected to grow close to trend level during 2011-12. This is significant given the high growth of 7 per cent experienced by the sector during the year 2010-11.

Statement I: Basic Rainfall Data (Cumulative)

Sub-Divisions

Rainfall for the period
October 1 to December 31, 2011.

Rainfall for the period
October 1 to December 31, 2010.

Actual
(mm)

Normal
(mm)

% deviation
from Normal

Actual
(mm)

Normal
(mm)

% deviation
from Normal

 1.

Andaman & Nicobar Islands

556.2

695.9

-20

D

951.0

723.5

31

E

 2.

Arunachal Pradesh

81.1

267.2

-70

S

145.2

240.7

-40

D

 3.

Assam & Meghalaya

51.7

195.0

-73

S

121.0

205.7

-41

D

 4.

Nagaland, Manipur, Mizoram & Tripura

79.9

243.0

-67

S

254.6

225.7

13

N

 5.

Sub-Himalayan West Bengal and Sikkim

64.8

185.3

-65

S

116.4

188.4

-38

D

 6.

Gangetic West Bengal

29.5

160.1

-82

S

137.2

155.1

-12

N

.

7 Orissa

24.4

144.1

-83

S

220.6

156.0

41

E

.

8 Jharkhand

25.3

91.6

-72

S

81.5

97.6

-16

N

.

9 Bihar

10.3

77.5

-87

S

54.6

78.9

-31

D

10.

East Uttar Pradesh

1.1

60.4

-98

S

22.1

60.8

-64

S

11.

West Uttar Pradesh

0.5

54.4

-99

S

21.1

50.2

-58

D

12.

Uttarakhand

10.5

89.6

-88

S

40.4

85.9

-53

D

13.

Haryana, Chandigarh & Delhi

0.2

29.4

-99

S

14.2

27.2

-48

D

14.

Punjab

4.1

41.0

-90

S

22.9

41.1

-44

D

15.

Himachal Pradesh

17.9

108.2

-83

S

92.5

111.1

-17

N

16.

Jammu & Kashmir

73.2

131.8

-44

D

101.3

146.3

-31

D

17.

West Rajasthan

0.1

9.5

-99

S

31.2

8.3

276

E

18.

East Rajasthan

0.0

27.6

-100

NR

77.6

26.0

198

E

19.

West Madhya Pradesh

0.5

53.1

-99

S

60.2

52.7

14

N

20.

East Madhya Pradesh

1.6

57.8

-97

S

31.0

60.3

-49

D

21.

Gujarat Region, Daman, Dadra & Nagar Haveli

2.4

34.9

-93

S

48.4

33.8

43

E

22.

Saurashtra & Kutch

3.4

29.0

-88

S

67.8

26.0

161

E

23.

Konkan and Goa

121.1

148.6

-19

N

299.1

135.5

121

E

24.

Madhya Maharashtra

58.6

107.8

-46

D

152.5

104.4

46

E

25.

Marathwada

25.4

101.6

-75

S

105.3

95.7

10

N

26.

Vidarbha

4.3

81.8

-95

S

94.7

75.5

25

E

27.

Chhattisgarh

15.6

76.9

-80

S

92.7

81.1

14

N

28.

Coastal Andhra Pradesh

179.3

327.4

-45

D

574.1

326.6

76

E

29.

Telangana

17.4

119.3

-85

S

165.1

109.1

51

E

30.

Rayalaseema

178.2

219.2

-19

N

275.1

212.2

30

E

31.

Tamil Nadu & Puducherry

536.5

438.2

22

E

607.5

429.6

41

E

32.

Coastal Karnataka

257.2

262.8

-2

N

590.3

257.9

129

E

33.

North Interior Karnataka

80.8

145.3

-44

D

165.8

136.8

21

E

34.

South Interior Karnataka

208.4

209.6

-1

N

332.4

200.6

66

E

35.

Kerala

447.2

480.7

-7

N

830.3

498.1

67

E

36.

Lakshadweep

316.7

333.6

-5

N

436.1

328.9

33

E

E : Excess, i.e.,+20% or more    

1

     

18

 
N : Normal, i.e.,+19% to -19%    

6

     

7

 
D : Deficient, i.e.,-20% to -59%    

5

     

10

 
S : Scanty, i.e.,-60% or less    

23

     

1

 
NR : No Rain, i.e. -100%    

1

     

0

 
Total    

36

     

36

 
Source: India Meteorological Department.

Statement - II: State-wise Distribution of Number of Districts with Excess, Normal, Deficient,
Scanty and No Rainfall

S.
No.

States

Period : 01.10.2011 to 31.12.2011

E

N

D

S

NR

ND

Total

1

Andaman & Nicobar Islands (UT)

0

1

2

0

0

0

3

2

Arunachal Pradesh

0

0

3

8

0

5

16

3

Assam

0

0

5

19

1

2

27

4

Meghalaya

1

0

0

4

1

1

7

5

Nagaland

0

0

0

3

0

8

11

6

Manipur

0

0

0

1

0

8

9

7

Mizoram

0

0

2

2

0

5

9

8

Tripura

0

0

0

4

0

0

4

9

Sikkim

0

0

2

2

0

0

4

10

West Bengal

0

0

1

18

0

0

19

11

Orissa

0

0

2

26

2

0

30

12

Jharkhand

0

1

4

11

3

5

24

13

Bihar

0

0

3

28

7

0

38

14

Uttar Pradesh

0

0

0

8

63

0

71

15

Uttarakhand

0

0

0

11

2

0

13

16

Haryana

0

0

0

2

19

0

21

17

Chandigarh (UT)

0

0

0

1

0

0

1

18

Delhi

0

0

0

2

7

0

9

19

Punjab

0

0

0

14

6

0

20

20

Himachal Pradesh

0

0

0

12

0

0

12

21

Jammu & Kashmir

1

3

8

8

0

2

22

22

Rajasthan

0

0

0

3

30

0

33

23

Madhya Pradesh

0

0

0

8

42

0

50

24

Gujarat

0

0

1

14

11

0

26

25

Dadra & Daman (UTs)

0

0

0

2

0

0

2

26

Diu (UT)

0

0

0

0

1

0

1

27

Goa

0

0

2

0

0

0

2

28

Maharashtra

1

3

9

22

0

0

35

29

Chhattisgarh

0

0

3

13

2

0

18

30

Andhra Pradesh

0

3

4

16

0

0

23

31

Tamil Nadu

20

12

0

0

0

0

32

32

Puducherry (UT)

0

2

0

0

0

2

4

33

Karnataka

4

14

7

5

0

0

30

34

Kerala

0

12

2

0

0

0

14

35

Lakshadweep (UT)

0

1

0

0

0

0

1

Total

27

52

60

267

197

38

641

E: Excess N: Normal D: Deficient
S: Scanty NR: No Rain ND: No Data
Source: India Meteorological Department.


* Prepared in the Structural Issues Division, Department of Economic and Policy Research, Reserve Bank of India.

1 Excess: + 20 per cent or more; Normal: +19 per cent to –19 per cent;
Deficient: – 20 per cent to – 59 per cent; Scanty: – 60 per cent to – 99 per cent;
No Rain: – 100 per cent (All with respect to the Long Period Average).


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