Tuesday, August 16: Even as the entire country commemorated India’s 75th Independence Day with plenty of enthusiasm and vigour, the rains did put a slight damper over the celebration in some parts of the country. Dark clouds blanketed Gujarat, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh on the national holiday, eventually leading to rainfall, waterlogging and a general disruption of life. Now, similar conditions shall prevail for the next 24-48 hours.
As per the India Meteorological Department (IMD), the depression over East Madhya Pradesh has shifted west-northwestwards with a speed of 33 kmph overnight, and lay centred close to Guna, West Madhya Pradesh during the early hours of Tuesday. From here on, this system is likely to continue moving west-northwestwards and gradually weaken into a well-marked low-pressure area during the next 12 hours.
Moreover, an off-shore trough also runs along south Gujarat and Maharashtra coasts at mean sea level, while the monsoon trough will remain active for the next two days.
Under the combined influence of these systems, isolated very heavy rains (115.5 mm-204 mm) are forecast over Rajasthan, West Madhya Pradesh and Gujarat state on Tuesday, August 16.
Fairly widespread to widespread light or moderate rainfall with isolated heavy falls (64.5 mm-115.5 mm), thunderstorms and lightning are expected to lash Madhya Pradesh on Tuesday, August 16, and Rajasthan and Gujarat until Wednesday, August 17.
Accordingly, the IMD has issued orange alerts over the Gujarat subdivision, Rajasthan and West Madhya Pradesh for the next 24 hours, so as to urge locals to “be prepared” for the inclement weather.
As for district-level advisories, orange alerts have been placed over Gujarat’s Navsari, Mahisagar, Surat and Aravalli districts on Tuesday and Jamnagar, Banaskantha and Sabar Kantha districts on Wednesday.
The Sirohi, Pali, Udaipur, Rajsamand, Chittorgarh, Bhilwara, Bundi, Jhalawar, Kota, Dausa and Baran districts of Rajasthan will be on orange alert on Tuesday, but the alerts will shift to Jodhpur, Nagaur, Sirohi, Jalare, Pali, Rajsamand and Ajmer on Wednesday.
In Madhya Pradesh, Betul, Burhanpur and Khargone will be on red warning (meaning ‘take action’), while Jabalpur, Hoshangabad, Alirajpur, Harda and Sagar will be on orange alert on Tuesday.
Meanwhile, these wet conditions have prevailed over this west-central region for the last few days. In the last 24 hours, 221 talukas of Gujarat received heavy downpours, with 6 inches of rain recorded in Vyara of Tapi.
The monsoon’s wrath didn’t spare Rajasthan either, and incessant showers led to severe waterlogging in various parts of Bundi city of Rajasthan on August 15. Last night, the inflow of water into the dams in parts of the state suddenly increased. A high alert has been issued in Jhalawar and Kota districts due to excess water inflow and excess discharge in the Bhimsagar dam.
Heavy inflows have flooded the dams in Madhya Pradesh as well. Due to the discharges from the Bargi, Tawa and Barna dams and heavy downpours in the Narmada basin, the water level of the Narmada river could rise in the next 24 to 36 hours. In view of this, Hoshangabad, Harda, Narsinghpur, Dewas, Raisen, Sehore, and Barwani districts have been advised to remain vigilant. Also, schools in Narmadapuram and Bhopal have declared a holiday due to heavy rains.
Meanwhile, thanks to the formation of a series of low-pressure areas in the Bay of Bengal and their subsequent movement towards Central India, these aforementioned states have received plentiful precipitation this monsoon season.
Between June 1 and August 15, Gujarat (653 mm) and Rajasthan (422 mm) have recorded ‘excess’ rains of 31% and 41% against their normal of 500 mm and 300 mm, respectively. On the other hand, Madhya Pradesh (716 mm) has seen ‘normal’ rains, although its recorded rainfall has still exceeded its average (619 mm) by 16%.
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