September 18, 2014 / 12:46 PM / 4 years ago

India's monsoon rains ease in past week ahead of retreat

NEW DELHI (Reuters) - India’s monsoon rains were a quarter below average in the week to Sept. 17, the weather office said on Thursday, ahead of a delayed retreat of the rains expected from this weekend.

A man uses a plastic sheet to protect himself from a heavy monsoon rain shower in Kolkata August 31, 2014. REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri

A week earlier, rainfalls were 64 percent above average, the heaviest for the June-September monsoon season.

On Wednesday, a senior weather official said the monsoon season was set to enter withdrawal phase by the weekend after a late surge had delayed the retreat by a fortnight, boosting output prospects for summer sown crops.

Reporting by Ratnajyoti Dutta; editing by Malini Menon

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