IMetD stating that Darjeeling district has had normal rainfall, STH's rainfall gauges located at Darjeeling, Kurseong and Kalimpong all show less than normal rainfall for May/June/and till date in July2012.
This is further substantiated by the fact that paddy cultivation which normally takes place in July in Kalimpong is on hold since paddy fields which should be flooded by monsoon rain water by this time, are still dry.
Despite this on 14-15July when we had just 100mm of rainfall over a 12hr period, landslides blocked the National Highway (NH) 31A between Gangtok and Siliguri and Darjeeling was also cut off from Siliguri for some time due to the above slips and not surprisingly the landslides took place along roads which are known to be a major cause of landslides the world over
Top photo : Road near Giddah Pahar in Kurseong
Bottom photo: Vehicles held up on the Pankha Bari Road to Siliguri.
Photo credit :STH member of Kurseong Bhushan Chhetri