- The India Meteorological Department (IMD) was established in 1875. It is the National Meteorological Service of the country and the principal government agency in all matters relating to meteorology, seismology and allied subjects.
- It is an agency of the Ministry of Earth Sciences.
- IMD is headquartered in Delhi and operates hundreds of observation stations across India and Antarctica. Regional offices are at Mumbai, Kolkata, Nagpur and Pune.
- IMD is also one of the six Regional Specialised Meteorological Centers of the World Meteorological Organization.
Main Functions of IMD
- To take meteorological observations and to provide current and forecast meteorological information for optimum operation of weather-sensitive activities like agriculture, irrigation, shipping, aviation, offshore oil explorations, etc.
- To warn against severe weather phenomena like tropical cyclones, norwesters, dust storms, heavy rains and snow, cold and heat waves, etc., which cause destruction of life and property.
- To provide meteorological statistics required for agriculture, water resource management, industries, oil exploration and other nation-building activities.
- To conduct and promote research in meteorology and allied disciplines.
- To detect and locate earthquakes and to evaluate seismicity in different parts of the country for development projects.
Why in News?
- The Indian Meteorological Department issued a heavy rain alert in Uttarakhand.
Various mobile apps launched by IMD
Damini for lightning forecast
- Damini Lightning Alert app, developed by the Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology (IITM), is for giving warning to the user about the lightning on the basis of user location.
MAUSAM for weather forecast
- The MAUSAM mobile App, designed and developed jointly by the International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT), IITM and IMD, has the following 5 services:
- Current Weather: Current temperature, humidity, wind speed and direction for 200 cities updated 8 times a day. Information on Sunrise/ sunset and moonrise/ moonset are also given.
- Nowcast: Three hourly warnings of localized weather phenomena and their intensity issued for about 800 stations, and districts of India by State Meteorological Centres of IMD. In case of severe weather, its impact also is included in the warning.
- City Forecast: Past 24 hours and 7 day forecast of weather conditions around 450 cities in India.
- Warnings: Alerts issued twice a day for all districts for the next five days in colour code (Red, Orange and Yellow) to warn citizens of approaching dangerous weather. The colour code Red is the most severe category urging authorities to take action, Orange code prompts authorities and public to be alert and Yellow code prompts authorities and public to keep them updated.
- Radar products: Latest Station wise radar products updated every 10 minutes.
Meghdoot for agrometeorological advisories
- The Meghdoot app is a joint initiative of the IMD and IITM and the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR).
- It provides forecasts relating to temperature, rainfall, humidity, and wind speed and direction, which play critical roles in agricultural operations and advisories to the farmers on how to take care of their crops and livestock. The information would be updated twice a week on Tuesdays and Fridays.