(Last Updated on : 02/05/2013)
Types of Indian climate are varied due to India`s unique geography and geology that strongly influence its climate. This is particularly true of the Himalayan Mountain in the north and the Thar Desert
in the northwest. The Himalayas act as a barrier to the frigid katabolic winds coming down from Central Asia. Although the Tropic of Cancer is the boundary between the tropics and subtropics and passes through the middle of India, the whole country is considered to be tropical one.
India is home to extraordinary types of Indian climate, ranging from tropical in the south to temperate and alpine in the Himalayan north, where eminent regions receive sustained winter snowfall. The climate of India is strongly influenced by the Himalayas and the Thar Desert. The Himalaya Mountain
, along with the Hindu Kush mountains in Pakistan, prohibit cold Central Asian katabatic winds from blowing in, thus keeping the volume of the Indian subcontinent warmer than most locations at similar latitudes.
The Thar Desert plays a role in attracting moisture-laden southwest summer monsoon winds between June and October that provide the majority of India`s rainfall. Four major climatic groupings rule over, into which seven climatic zones as designated by experts, are included on the basis of such features as temperature and precipitation.
The different types are as follows:
- A tropical rainy climate covers regions experiencing constant warm or high temperatures, which usually do not fall below 18 degree Celsius. The most humid is the tropical wet monsoon climate that encompasses a strip of south-western lowlands adjoining the Malabar Coast, the Western Ghats, and southern Assam
. India`s two island territories, Lakshwadeep and the Andaman and Nicobar Islands
also witness this climate.
- A tropical arid and semi-arid climate in India dominates regions where the rate of moisture loss through evaporation and transpiration exceeds than that from precipitation; it is subdivided into three climatic subtypes. The first, a tropical semi-arid steppe climate, predominates over the south of Tropic of Cancer and east of the Western Ghats and the Cardamom Hills
. Most of western Rajasthan
experiences a parched climatic regime. Rainfall is responsible for virtually all of the region`s annual precipitation, which counts up to less than 300 millimeters. Such bursts happen when monsoon winds sweep into the region during July, August, and September. East of the Thar Desert, the region running from Punjab
experiences a tropical and sub-tropical steppe climate.
- Most of Northeast India and much of North India are subject to a humid sub-tropical climate. They experience hot summers, temperatures during the coldest months may fall as low as 0 degree Celsius. In most of this region, there is very little precipitation during the winter, high wind speed and summer rainfall with powerful thunderstorms associated with the southwest summer monsoon; occasional tropical cyclones also occur.
- India`s northernmost lands are subject to a montane, or alpine, climate. Climates ranging from nearly tropical in the foothills to tundra above the snow line can co-exist within several dozen miles of each other. Sharp temperature contrasts between sunny and shady slopes, high diurnal temperature variability, temperature inversions, and altitude-dependent variability in rainfall are also common. The northern side of the western Himalayas, also known as the trans-Himalayan belt, is a section of barren, arid, frosty, and wind-blown wastelands.
The India Meteorological Department (IMD) designates four official seasons in India, namely the winter, summer, monsoon and post monsoon. Winter occurs between January and March. The year`s coldest months are December and January, when temperatures average around 10-15 degree Celsius in the northwest. Summer or pre-monsoon season, lasts from March to June (April to July in north-western India). In western and southern regions, the hottest month is April; for northern regions, May is the hottest month.
Monsoon or rainy season lasts from June to September. The season is dominated by the humid southwest summer monsoon, which slowly swaps across the country starting in late May or early June. Post-monsoon season lasts from October to December. South India usually receives more precipitation. Monsoon rains begin to withdraw from North India at the beginning of October. The types of Indian climate are responsible for the variation of weather in different parts of the Indian subcontinent.