Heavy rain lash Karnataka as monsoon extends


Bengaluru, Oct 12 : With the monsoon extending beyond September, moderate to heavy rain continue to lash many parts of Karnataka, flooding low-laying areas and disrupting normal life, an official said on Monday. Very heavy rainfall (14cm) was recorded at Hukkeri in Belagavi district, 13 cm at Hungund in Bagalkote district, 10cm at Khajuri in Kalaburagi district and 9cm at Bevoor in Koppal district during the last 24 hours. "As favourable systems like strong winds, low depression in the Bay of Bengal and air circulation remain active in the peninsula, the southwest monsoon has extended by two weeks, resulting in rains lashing the state," Karnataka disaster management authority consultant G. Srinvasa Reddy told IANS here. For the second consecutive year, the southwest monsoon from June-September has been very good for Karnataka, with 27 per cent excess rainfall. Though the monsoon normally withdraws from the region by the third or fourth week of September, cloud formation and surface winds brought widespread rains in the state's coastal, central and south interior areas over the last 10 days. "With signs of another system (depression) forming in the Bay of Bengal, more rains are forecast in many parts of the state in the third week (from October 16) before the monsoon formally withdraws," Reddy noted. Admitting that monsoon extension was not good for farmers as rains damage their kharif crop, Reddy said harvesting should be completed in time to minimise the loss before the northeast monsoon sets in the third or fourth week of this month. "As the monsoon remained active through September, harvesting in many parts of the state was delayed, as farmers were waiting for crops to dry a bit in sunshine and store them. With no let-up in rains, damage to crops is expected to an extent," added Reddy. Meanwhile, the weather office forecast rain with thunder showers in many parts of the state over the next 48 hours. "We have sounded red alert in coastal, southern and central districts of the state as heavy rains are forecast till Thursday," a weather official said. Owing to squally weather with wind speed reaching 40-50kmph along the state's west coast, fishermen have been advised not to venture into the Arabian Sea till Wednesday. Monsoon was vigorous over the north interior areas of the state. Rainfall occurred in the coastal region and in many places across the south interior parts of the state. /IANS


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