Monsoon enters lull, remains 26 pc deficit in Himachal

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Shimla, Aug 3 (IANS) After days of heavy rainfall, the monsoon will remain largely subdued in Himachal Pradesh till August 5, the Met office said on Wednesday.

Despite 26 per cent deficit rain, 20 lives have been lost so far. The damage to public and private property was estimated at over Rs 160 crore, an official said.

“Precipitation occurred at many places in the state. There has been no appreciable change in the minimum and maximum temperatures,” Manmohan Singh, Director of the Meteorological Department, told IANS.

“From June 1 to July 31, the state received 330.9 mm of rain against the normal average of 445.4 mm,” he said.

He said the towns of Shimla, Mashobra, Narkanda, Kufri, Kasauli, Shimla, Palampur and Manali recorded rainfall.

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Sakaghat town in Mandi district received 20 mm of rain, state’s maximum.

“The monsoon will remain subdued till August 5 with chances of light rain at some places. On August 6 and 7, there are chances of heavy rainfall at some places in low and mid hills,” he added.

A government spokesperson said water level in the Satluj, Beas and Yamuna rivers and their tributaries, which are in spate in Kinnaur, Shimla, Kullu, Mandi, Bilaspur and Sirmaur districts, have started receding with the decline in rainfall.

Lahaul-Spiti (84 per cent), Kinnaur (63 per cent) and Chamba (53 per cent) districts faced shortfall of rainfall.

Water level in Pong Dam — one of the state’s major water reservoirs — was still 40 ft lower on Tuesday compared to the last year.

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The dam serves the irrigation requirements of Punjab, Haryana and Rajasthan, mainly during the off-monsoon season.

“The water level in the Pong dam reservoir stood at 1,326 feet on Tuesday,” an official of the Bhakra Beas Management Board (BBMB) told IANS.

He said the water level in the reservoir was quite less compared to the last year, when it stood at 1,366 feet on this day last year.

Official data said the maximum storage capacity for the Pong dam located on the Beas river is 1,393 feet.



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