Weather Forecasting Current Affairs

IMD to team up with BSNL for sending extreme weather warnings

The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has teamed up with state-run Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) to send extreme weather warnings (alerts) to people. The alerts will be about impending extreme weather conditions such as thunderstorms and heatwave.

Key Facts

BSNL and IMD will send area-specific alerts to users if they happen to be at place likely to experience extreme weather conditions, even if their phone numbers do not belong to that particular telecom circle. The exercise is being carried out in an experimental stage, and if successful Ministry of Earth Sciences plans to rope in other weather agencies also.


The move comes after IMD came under criticism from several quarters, including some state governments for not sending out specific alerts. Government weather forecasting agencies have limitations in disseminating information, especially in scenarios like thunderstorms where events unfold very quickly. Since these weather forecasting agencies cannot reach every individual, there must an intermediate agency that could pass on the forecast to people. Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) had recently asked IMD to send weather advisories to people.


Meteorological Department issues warning of another dust storm in UP, Rajasthan

Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) has issued warning of another dust storm and thunderstorm in parts of Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan. The satellite images have shown wind pressure developing in two states leading to thunderstorms, gusty winds and heavy rain. It also has forecasted thunderstorm accompanied with squall is also likely at isolated places over Uttarakhand, Sikkim, West Bengal and Odisha. The fresh warning comes after two north Indian states were earlier hit severe dust storm, which took lives of over 100 people and left trail of destruction.

Reasons for formation of rainstorms and duststorms

Rainstorms (thunderstroms) and duststorms arise from similar meteorological conditions. They are almost always preceded and caused by spell of intense heat. Thunderstorms occur when atmosphere has moisture and duststorms take place when moisture is not present. Such events take place due to local instability arising out of deviation from normal temperature difference between upper and lower atmosphere. Thus, these events themselves are very localised both in time and space.

In recent rainstorms and duststorms cases in Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan, moist easterly winds from Bay of Bengal reached up to Himachal Pradesh colluded with dry winds from north-westerly direction. The two systems destabilised equilibrium temperature difference between upper and lower layers of atmosphere, leading to conducive conditions for thunderstorm and duststroms. The final trigger, however, is development of largescale air-circulation system. Many parts of India witness build-up of surface heat during this time of year. The places that were hit by recent storms had seen heat-wave like conditions.