Weather Conditions


The climate of the district is characterized by general dryness except in the brief south –west monsoon season, a hot summer and bracing winter . The year may be divided in four seasons. The cold season is from November to march. The period from April to June is the hot season. The south-west monsoon season is from about the beginning of July to the first week of September. The succeeding period lasting till the beginning of November is the post-monsoon or transition period .


The average annual rainfall in the district is 541.9mm.The rainfall in the district increases generally from the south-west towards the north-east and varies from 435.5 mm at Khara to 591.7 mm at Rayya. About 74 per cent of the annual normal rainfall in the district is received during the period June to September and as much as about 13 per cent of the annual rainfall occurs during the period December to February .The variation in rainfall from year to year is large .In the 50 year period 1901 to 1950,the highest annual rainfall amounting to 184 per cent of the normal occurred in 1917, while the very next year was one with the lowest annual rainfall which was 54 per cent of the normal. In this 50 year period, the annual rainfall in the district was less than 80 per cent of the normal in 13 years, with two consecutive years of such low rainfall at the individual stations, two consecutive years of such low rainfall occurred 6 times at Khara and 4 times at Amritsar. Three such consecutive years also occurred once each at 4 out of the 7 stations. Even 4 consecutive years of such low rainfall occurred once at Tarn Taran . It will be seen from Table 2 that the annual rainfall in the district was between 401 and 700 mm in 33 years out of 50. On an average, there are 30 rainy days (i.e. days with rainfall of 2.5mm or more)in a year in the district. This number varies from 24 at Khara to 34 at Rayya. The heaviest rainfall in 24 hours recorded at any station in the district was 457.2 mm at Khara on 5 October 1955 .The monthly average rainfall in the Amritsar District, during 1968, 1973 to 1986, is given in Table 3.


There is a meteorological observatory in the district at Amritsar and the records of this observatory may be taken as representative of the meteorological conditions prevailing in the district in general. From about the end of March, temperatures increase steadily till June which is the hottest month with mean daily minimum at 25.2c.The heat during the summer is intense and the hot dust laden winds which blow during the afternoons add to the discomfort .with the onset of the monsoon in the district by about the end of June or the beginning of July, there is appreciable drop in the day temperature. The nights are, however as warm during the monsoon as in summer and due to the increased moisture in the monsoon air, the weather is often oppressive. After the withdrawal of the monsoon early in September while the day temperatures remain as in the monsoon season, nights become progressively cooler. From October, there is a rapid drop in the temperatures. January is generally the coldest month with the mean daily maximum at 4.5c. During the cold season, the district is affected by cold waves in the rear of passing western disturbances and the minimum temperature occasionally drops down to a degree or two below the freezing point of water. Frosts are common during the cold season. The highest maximum temperature recorded at Amritsar was 47.7 C on 21 May 1978..The lowest minimum was 3.3 C on 25 December 1984.


Relative humidity is generally high in the mornings, exceeding 70 per cent except during the summer season when it is less than 50 per cent. The humidity is comparatively less in the afternoons. The driest part of the year is the summer season when the relative humidity in the afternoons is about 25 per cent or less.


The skies are generally partly to heavily clouded and occasionally overcast during the monsoon and for brief spells of a day or two in association with passing western disturbances during the cold season .During the rest of the year, the skies are mostly clear or lightly clouded.


winds are generally light with some strengthening in the summer and early part of the monsoon season. In the post-monsoon and cold season, winds are light and variable in direction in the morning and mostly from the west or north-west in the afternoons. In April and May, winds are mainly from direction between north-west and north-east in the mornings and between west and north-east in the afternoons. By June, easterlies and south –easterlies also blow and in the south-west monsoon season. winds are more commonly from directions between north-east and south-east.

Special weather phenomena

Western disturbances affect the weather over the district during the cold season, causing widespread rain and gusty winds. Dust-storms and thunderstorms occur in the summer season. Occasional fog occurs in the cold season.