NEW DELHI - India's monsoon rainfall has been below average in the past week after running through a phase above average since early August which helped finish the last leg of sowing of main summer crops such as rice, corn, sugar cane, soybean and cotton.
India expected to see below-average to average rains in 2014 if El Nino weather pattern gains strength
India suffered a severe drought in 2009 when monsoon rains failed due to El Nino
India's weather office rates as normal rainfall between 96 and 104 percent of a 50-year average of 89 centimetres
Poor monsoons could dent crop output in India - the world's No.2 rice and sugar producer
Healthy harvests can help keep a lid on food inflation
"There is a strong consensus about the possibility of evolution of an El Nino event during the summer monsoon season."
- D.S. Pai, lead forecaster of the Indian weather office