The India Meteorological Department
(IMD), also referred to as the Met Office, is a Government of India
organisation that is responsible for meteorological observations, weather forecasts, and detecting earthquakes. The IMD is also the Regional Specialised Meteorological Centre
responsible for forecasting tropical cyclones
in the Arabian Sea
and the Bay of Bengal
. It is located in India
's capital, New Delhi
The department is headed by a Director General of Meteorology. There are a total of four junior Additional Directors General at New Delhi and one at Pune
. Additionally, there are twenty Deputy Directors General, ten of them located in New Delhi.
There are six regional meteorological centres, each under a Deputy Director General. The six regional centres are located in Mumbai (Bombay), Chennai (Madras), New Delhi, Kolkata (Calcutta), Nagpur and Guwahati. There are also sub-units in each state capitals.
After a tropical cyclone
, and the subsequent famines in 1866
due to the failure of the monsoons, it was decided to set up a meteorological organisation under one roof.
H.F. Blanford was appointed the first meteorological reporter to the government of India. In May 1889, Sir John Eliot was appointed as the first Director General of Observatories in the earstwhile capital Calcutta. The headquarters were shifted to Shimla, Pune and then to New Delhi.
The meteorological department undertakes observations, communications, forecasting and weather services. IMD was also the first organisation in India to have a message switching computer for supporting its global data exchange. In collaboration with the Indian Space Research Organisation
, the IMD also uses the Indian National Satellite System
(INSAT) for weather monitoring of the Indian subcontinent, being the first weather bureau of a developing country to develop and maintain its own geostationary satellite system.
The IMD is also one of six Regional Specialised Meteorological Centres within the World Weather Watch programme of the World Meteorological Organization, responsible for forecasting tropical cyclone activity in the Indian Ocean north of the equator, including the Arabian Sea and the Bay of Bengal.