The Indian Express | 1 month ago | 06-07-2022 | 03:50 am
With Tuesday’s downpour, Mumbai has recorded 69.41 per cent (594 mm) of the average July rainfall (855.7 mm) in just the first five days of the month.After a dry period in June, the city has recorded moderate to heavy rainfall since the start of this month. On three days this month, the city received more than 100 mm rain. In nine hours on Tuesday, the India Meteorological Department’s (IMD) Santacruz observatory recorded 153.3 mm of rain, categorised as very heavy rainfall.The weather bureau has forecast the current surge in rainfall activity to continue in Mumbai and the entire Konkan region and ghat areas of Madhya Maharashtra till the end of this week. Maharashtra is very likely to experience an active rainfall spell this week.“Due to active monsoon conditions, rainfall activity over Konkan and adjoining ghat areas of Madhya Maharashtra is expected to increase in the next 4 to 5 days. Widespread rainfall activity with heavy to very heavy rainfall at a few places and isolated extremely heavy rainfall is expected over the region in this period. Parts of Marathwada and Vidarbha are also very likely to receive widespread rainfall activity,” stated the forecast.The IMD has issued an orange alert for Mumbai and Thane for July 7-8, indicating extremely heavy rainfall in isolated places, while a red alert has been issued for Palghar (July 8) and Raigad and Ratnagiri till July 8.The IMD’s Santacruz observatory recorded total rainfall for the season at 733 mm, which is 13 mm higher than average, while the Colaba conservatory recorded 48 mm surplus rain. In the 24 hours ending at 8.30 am on Tuesday, rainfall recorded by the Colaba observatory was 117.4 mm while the Santacruz observatory recorded 124.2 mm rainfall.Dr Jayanta Sarkar, scientist and head of the Regional Meteorological Centre, Mumbai, said, “The weather conditions currently are very active in the state. The reason is various favourable synoptic situations like a low-pressure area, whose latest location is central parts of Madhya Pradesh (as on Tuesday afternoon), an offshore trough from Gujarat coast to Maharashtra coast and strong westerly winds. We expect widespread rains in the entire state for the next five days and especially scattered places could see heavy to very heavy rain and isolated places could see extremely heavy rain.”
Following the footsteps of the BJP, the Gujarat Congress has instructed its workers to form page commandos to prepare voters’ lists, identify the party’s voters and ensure they reach the polling stations. With Assembly elections around the corner, the instruction came at the party’s ‘maru booth maru gaurav’ (my booth, my pride) event in Surat Tuesday. Rajasthan chief minister Ashok Gehlot who was to visit Surat and Rajkot on Tuesday to meet Congress leaders for the first time after being appointed senior observer, could not come. The special plane he was flying in, from Jaipur, was reportedly not allowed to land in Surat due to bad weather. He has now rescheduled his visit for Wednesday when he will only go to Vadodara and Ahmedabad. Gehlot will land in Vadodara Wednesday morning and meet Central Gujarat leaders and then head to Ahmedabad to meet north Gujarat leaders and is then expected to address a press conference.“Today, we have come up with matdar yadi (voters’ list) of 35 assembly seats of South Gujarat and handed them over to the district heads. A single page of matdar yadi (voting member list) consists of 30 voters. The page commandos should identify at least 19 Congress voters from the list and take them to polling stations for voting and also see who are left over and repeat it. It is the duty of page commandos to see nobody is left from the voting list. Generally, the average voting turnout of the assembly seat is between 65 to 70 per cent. We have to target those who had not voted and take them to polling stations as they are the voters of the Congress. If the voters’ turnout increases by 20 per cent, then we are sure to win 125 seats in the Gujarat assembly elections,” said state Congress President Jagdish Thakor. He added that in the Udaipur meeting, it was decided to form a new structure of organisation. In the city area, the ward committee will be treated as mandals and the polling booth committee will be treated as sector, while in the rural Talukas, panchayat seats will be treated as mandals and district panchayat seats as sectors.He also alleged that Rajasthan Chief Minister and Congress leader Ashok Gehlot, who was to begin his three-day state visit and attend the event in South Gujarat, was denied landing permission at Surat airport Tuesday citing poor weather conditions. “I am afraid they will not allow us to organise a rally here like they did not allow the landing of Gehlot’s aircraft at the Surat airport today. He has been ready since 9.30 am in the morning to attend the first political meeting in Surat, but his aircraft was denied landing. Today, we have come to know what will happen if an airport is sold or privatised. The decision to give permission for flying and landing of aircraft lies with the airport authority,” he said.Thakor also announced various steps to begin the election campaign in the state from August 20. He urged workers to make elaborate arrangements for the rallies of Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi Vadra. “Around one lakh people should participate in the rally with 25,000 bikes and 10,000 cars,” he said.In a veiled reference to Gujarat BJP President CR Paatil, Thakor further said, “The Surat man is moving around the state and talking about the page committee and page president but it is all false. Their internal party survey says that the party will not cross 70 seats in the elections.”Gujarat, earlier known after leaders such as Mahatma Gandhi and Sardar Patel and for its cooperative movement, has now become a hub of drugs, said All India Congress Committee (AICC) Secretary BM Sandeep. “In the past four to five months, drugs worth over Rs 40,000 crore were seized from Gujarat ports. Through media reports and sources, we have come to know that drugs worth over Rs 2 lakh crore landed at Gujarat ports and were supplied to different parts of the country.”He added that the party has toured across the 35 assembly seats of South Gujarat. “During the last assembly elections, we (Congress) could not form the government due to the poor performance in South Gujarat. A majority of the area in the region are tribal and they face great problems such as land acquisitions for different development projects like the bullet train, Vedanta project, leopard park, Par-Tapi-Narmada river-linking project, Express highway project, etc,” he said, emphasising the need to organise meetings with the tribal communities in different parts of South Gujarat.Dr. Raghu Sharma, Gujarat Congress incharge, said his party had already discussed the announcements made by AAP leader Arvind Kejriwal in the state. “Kejriwal should go to Rajasthan and see how the health infrastructure is. Insurance cover of Rs 5 lakh is given to the citizens. During the covid pandemic, the work done by the Rajasthan government was excellent and the work was appreciated by PM Narendra Modi,” he said.
The death of former MLC and Shiv Sangram Party founder Vinayak Mete in an accident on Sunday brought to the fore the issue of safety of the Mumbai-Pune Expressway. The 95-kilometre stretch is one of the busiest expressways of the state and handles about 60,000 vehicles per day. Since 2018, it has seen 337 fatal accidents in which 400 people lost their lives.In order to make the expressway safer for commuters, the Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC) decided, back in 2018, to set up an Intelligent Traffic Management System (ITMS) that would reduce accidents and ensure effective management and regulation of traffic, deterring high-speed and dangerous driving. In 2019, the MSRDC floated the tender for selection of a bidder for implementing the ITMS.While the project didn’t move then, it got a fresh lease of life last year. “The tender got delayed due to a few issues, such as Covid and lockdown; however the process was expedited last year. The agency is now finalised and the work order has also been issued. It will take around 9-10 months for installation, and then for the system to go live after all the tests,” said an MSRDC official.The work has been issued to Mumbai based Proc-tech Solutions Private Limited which will install the system and maintain it for the next ten years. The official cited above said the estimated cost of the project is Rs 340 crore and it will be a Public Private Partnership (PPP) model.The ITMS will have an average speed detection system at 39 locations, and lane discipline violation detection system at 34 locations. It will also have a weather monitoring system at 11 locations. The stretch will be under complete CCTV surveillance and there will be automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) cameras to track the vehicles, along with high-tech mobile surveillance vans equipped with cameras, speed guns, and e-challan machines for penalising and displays.“A Command and Control Center (CCC) will be at Lonavala apart from other centres for live monitoring the situation at the expressway which will enable it to send medical assistance in case of accidents,” an official said.Incidentally, the driver of Vinayak Mete’s car had claimed that they had to wait for over an hour for medical help to arrive after the accident.
Only light or very light rainfall is expected in Delhi over the next seven days with cloudy skies, light rain or thundershowers along with strong winds of 30 to 40 kmph, according to the India Meteorological Department (IMD).Very light rainfall is likely on Wednesday and Friday, while the weekend could see light rain in Delhi.The maximum temperature could be around 34 degrees Celsius on Tuesday, close to the 34.9 degrees Celsius recorded on Monday. The minimum temperature early on Tuesday was 27 degrees Celsius. At 8.30 am on Tuesday, the temperature was 29.6 degrees Celsius and the relative humidity was 74 per cent.Delhi has seen a deficit in rainfall so far this August, with rainfall at the Safdarjung weather observatory falling well below the ‘normal’ for the month. Around 24.9 mm of rainfall has been recorded at Safdarjung so far, which is 80 per cent below ‘normal’ of 125.4 mm till August 16. The observatory at Safdarjung provides a marker for the city.This monsoon season, Safdarjung has recorded 335.7 mm of rainfall, 18 per cent short of the ‘normal’ of 409.2 mm. In July, excess rainfall was recorded at Safdarjung, while June saw a large deficit of around 67 per cent.The monsoon trough, a low-pressure area associated with the monsoon, lies south of its normal position. The western end of the trough is likely to shift northwards from August 17 onwards, according to an IMD bulletin issued on Tuesday. The position of the trough can contribute to determining which parts of the country see an active monsoon.According to an IMD bulletin issued on Monday, active monsoon conditions are likely to persist over Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Gujarat, and northern Maharashtra over the next two days, with rainfall decreasing thereafter.Widespread light or moderate rainfall along with isolated heavy rainfall is likely over Himachal Pradesh on August 18 and Uttarakhand from August 18 to 20.
Pune district, particularly the ghat areas, will receive moderate to heavy showers till Tuesday, the India Meteorological Department (IMD) has said, adding that the district will remain on ‘orange’ alert till Tuesday.Cloudy skies and light rainfall are also likely within Pune city limits over the next two days, the weather agency said.The IMD has also placed Raigad, Ratnagiri and Satara districts on ‘orange’ alert for the next couple of days.Currently, the Southwest monsoon is active over Maharashtra and central India. The monsoon trough is currently south of its normal position. Besides, a depression prevails over south Jharkhand and adjoining north Odisha and its subsequent movement will decide the rainfall distribution, the agency said.“This depression will move west-northwest in the next 24-hours,” the IMD said in a bulletin issued on Sunday.As the system inches closer, Vidarbha and its neighbourhood areas will receive extremely heavy rainfall (more than 200 mm in 24 hours) at isolated places on Monday.There are also strong westerly winds blowing from the Arabian Sea over coastal Maharashtra regions, Met officials said, adding that the presence of an off-shore trough between Gujarat and Maharashtra will strengthen the inflow of westerly winds.Due to the prevailing weather conditions, Konkan and north Madhya Maharashtra will experience thunderstorms, lightning and moderate rainfall till Tuesday, the Met officials said.
The India Meteorological Department (IMD) Thursday said prevailing active monsoon conditions will cause widespread heavy rain over central India regions.IMD officials said there were multiple favourable weather systems influencing Jammu and Kashmir, Uttarakhand, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Maharashtra and Gujarat, where rainfall activity will continue till Monday. These systems include low-pressure ones present over central Madhya Pradesh, a well-marked low pressure system over Gujarat, the monsoon trough running between these two systems and an off-shore trough running parallel along the coasts of Gujarat till Kerala. Besides, an east-west wind shear zone, where the monsoon winds remain active, also persists.“The monsoon trough is likely to be active and oscillate between its normal and southern position for the next five days,” said the IMD in its weather bulletin issued on Thursday.Parts of Jammu, which received heavy rain, remained among the country’s wettest areas on the day. Jammu recorded 189.6 mm on Thursday, the highest for a single day in August since 2010, the IMD’s rainfall data stated. Similarly, heavy rain was recorded at Udhampur (121.6mm) and Katra (77.8mm) on Thursday.