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Extreme weather is here to stay

The widespread rainfall in the dry month of April is RATHER RARE. The rain was attributed to Western Disturbances over Rajasthan and west Pakistan. It comes at the back of a freakish winter which saw low temperatures in places like Mumbai and Kolkata, where weather normally remains moderate through the year. Experts say incidences of extreme weather are increasing in India. This is part of the wider process of climate change though no single event can be pinned to it. "We are seeing unusual weather this year." "I expect the summer to have spells of extreme dry heat and dust storms in northern India, with short intervals of rain. Such extremities can be attributed to circulation anomalies induced by abnormal temperatures over parts of the globe." There's also evidence of change in the rainfall distribution pattern. Spells of heavy rainfall are increasing and those of light rain decreasing. In the 1950s, 45 heavy rain events occurred on an average during a season; this has now increased to 65-70. The total rainfall, however, remains the same.

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A farmer sits dejected in his fields as heavy rain flattened crops throughout north India (TOI Photo)
Rain Ravages Large Parts of North India

CHANDIGARH: As hard rains lashed Paramjit Singh’s flattened fields in Nauli, Jalandhar, he squatted in the middle of a heap of ravaged wheat with both hands clutching his head.

The unseasonal shower, he said, had finished him as it had laid low the hopes of thousands of others like him in large parts of north India.

"Almost 80% of my wheat crop in the 25 acres I have has been damaged," he said. "It’s not good."

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