It's been a case of changing fortunes as far as the monsoon is concerned this year. In end-June, rainfall was 33 per cent deficient according to the India Meteorological Department (IMD). By July 24, the deficit was down to 19 per cent. On August 7, cumulative rainfall the country received rose to 492.7 millimetre (mm), just 5 per cent lower than 516.4 mm that is considered as normal. Four days later, IMD data indicated that actual rainfall rose to 553.9 million, one per cent higher than the normal average rainfall of 550.8 mm expected till that day.
While the rainfall might look normal or near normal overall, such huge variations in the intensity of rainfall can be devastating economically and socially as is being witnessed by the loss of lives, livelihood and infrastructure including houses and roads in several parts of the country. Hence, mere rainfall or crop sowing statistics cannot be meaningful in itself. India's monsoon preparedness should consider these climate change induced fluctuations in rainfall patterns in future.