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Weather report: March ends with rain deficiency, soil over northwest India

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New Delhi, Apr 02: Scientists from the India Meteorological Department (IMD) said that the first month of the three-month pre-monsoon season (March, April, May) ended with a rain deficiency of 45 per cent across the country-43 per cent over northwest India; 47 per cent over east and northeast India; 56 per cent over the South Peninsula, and 38 per cent over central India, and moisture deficiency in air across northwest India.

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Delhi's Safdarjung station recorded a relative humidity of only 10 to 15 per cent on Thursday afternoon as dry, northwesterly winds blew over the Capital.

Speaking to media, Kuldeep Shrivastava, head, regional weather forecasting centre said, "There is no weather system which is bringing in moisture to the region. For the next 4-5 days, we expect very dry conditions over the entire northwest India. The relative humidity was 32 per cent in the morning which had dropped to 10 to 15 per cent in the afternoon. Whatever moisture was there is evaporating."

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"In January and February, there were two Western Disturbances. In March, there were 4-5 Western Disturbances but most of them brought rain to the western Himalayas so the plains are very dry. When strong, warm and dry winds are blowing they can cause dehydration to people outdoors during afternoon hours. This is called loo, it's normally felt in May. Those stepping out should remain hydrated or avoid stepping out during afternoon," he added.

A Western Disturbance is expected to affect the western Himalayan region around April 4 but its impact is likely to be limited to the region. "From April 6, humidity may go up marginally after the Western Disturbance moves away," said Shrivastava.

IMD Pune's Standard Precipitation Index (SPI) for March 2021 suggests almost the entire northwest India and Indo-Gangetic Plains region is mildly to moderately dry.

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    SPI is an index used for drought monitoring and is negative for drought, and positive for wet conditions. Most parts of the northeast and peninsular India are also dry with some pockets severely and extremely dry indicating drought like conditions. East Rajasthan and most parts of central India are mildly wet.

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