New Delhi, April 4: Monsoon 2018 is expected to be normal in India in comparison to 2017 when the country received below normal rainfall, private weather forecasting agency Skymet has predicted. As per the report, India is most likely to witness normal annual monsoon rains at 100 per cent of the Long Period Average (LPA) for the four-month period from June to September. The India Meteorological Department is expected to announce its forecast later this month.

The country is already witnessing soaring temperatures since March. Reports mentioned that there is only 20 per cent chance of above normal Monsoon rains, 20 per cent chance of below normal rains and zero per cent chances of drought.

The agency also ruled out the possibility of nationwide drought as this year there will be sufficient rainfall. The marginal rain deficiency may not affect northern part of the country, but deficit rains in Peninsular India may be a cause worry for farmers and policy makers.

As per Skymet Weather, above normal rains will benefit the farmers who are expecting good showers in the sowing month of June. Although rains would witness a drop in July and August but that will not much effect the farmers. September would again see rains reviving, which would further aide crop production. The Monsoon season contributes around 70 per cent of the country’s annual rainfall. The key crop season ‘Kharif’ is primarily dependent on Monsoon rains.

In 2017 southwest monsoon season India received ‘below normal’ rainfall at 95 per cent of the Long Period Average (LPA) as against the India Meteorological Department (IMDs) forecast of rains to be normal at 98 per cent of the LPA with a model error of plus and minus 4 per cent. Skymet had predicted a ‘below normal’ monsoon in 2017.