In pictures: North India boils as temperatures near 50C

Tourists using saree for protection from the scorching sun on a hot summer day, in Jaipur, Rajasthan, India, on Wednesday, May 22, 2024.
Women use a saree to ward off the heat in Rajasthan state [Getty Images]

Parts of northern India continue to reel under a prolonged heat spell that has thrown normal life out of gear.

On Thursday, temperatures soared beyond 45C in many states and touched 48.8C in Rajasthan state's Barmer city.

India's weather department has said that the heatwave is likely to continue till Wednesday.

Several regions are facing water and electricity shortages due to spikes in power consumption.

A young girl washes her face as increasing temperature during hot weather, on May 18, 2024 in New Delhi, India.
A woman pours water on her face on a hot day in Delhi [Getty Images]

On Wednesday, Delhi's peak power demand reached 8,000MW, the highest in the history of the Indian capital.

Delhi is experiencing a brutal heat spell, with temperatures hovering around 45-46C through this week.

Weather experts say that the heat index - or the apparent or experienced temperature - has crossed 50C because of the high levels of humidity.

Hospitals in the city have set up special facilities to treat patients experiencing heat-related illnesses, which are also on the rise.

A Kashmiri man swims in waters of the Dal Lake to cool off during hot weather, in Srinagar, the summer capital of Indian Kashmir, 22 May 2024. Kashmir is witnessing above normal temperatures as the summer season gets underway. The local meteorological department has forecasted mainly dry and hot weather conditions until 28 May in the Himalayan region. Kashmir experiences hot weather conditions, Srinagar, India - 22 May 2024
A man swims in the Dal Lake in Kashmir. The Himalayan region is also experiencing above normal temperatures this summer [EPA-EFE/REX/Shutterstock]
 Indian elephant takes a water shower to beat the heat in an enclosure at Zoological Park on May 20, 2024 in New Delhi, India.
Elephants being hosed down in the Delhi zoo, where officials say they are taking extra measures to keep the animals comfortable [Getty Images]

Rohit Nair, 34, who works in advertising in Delhi, says that the heat is unbearable.

"I just feel exhausted the entire day. Delhi is boiling this year," he says.

Mr Nair says he avoids stepping out during the afternoons, but it's uncomfortable even indoors.

"It's impossible to sit without the air conditioner on," he says.

People travelling on an electric rickshaw cover their heads during a hot sunny day in old quarters of Delhi on May 21, 2024. Indian authorities in the capital have ordered schools shut early for the summer holiday, after temperatures hit 47.4 degrees Celsius (117 degrees Fahrenheit) with Delhi gripped by a "severe heatwave". (Photo by Arun SANKAR / AFP) (Photo by ARUN SANKAR/AFP via Getty Images)
People working in the informal sector are more prone to experiencing heat-related illnesses [Getty Images]
BUDGAM, INDIA - 2024/05/15: A non-local labourer uses a mould to make bricks at a brick kiln in Budgam. The substantial emission of toxic elements from brick kilns poses grave threats to public health and the environment. These kilns release harmful fumes that can adversely affect the eyes, lungs, and throat of individuals exposed to them. In Jammu and Kashmir, traditional brick kilns' pollution concerns are being addressed with a shift to zig zag technology. Zig zag technology introduces a zig zag pattern in the kiln's firing system. This design allows for a more controlled airflow, optimizing the combustion process that helps in achieving better heat distribution, resulting in increased energy efficiency and reduced emissions. (Photo by Idrees Abbas/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)
This summer has been particularly tough for labourers, who work for long hours under the sun [Getty Images]
NEW DELHI, INDIA - MAY 12: Visitors seen out on a hot afternoon at India Gate, on May 12, 2024 in New Delhi, India. (Photo by Sanjeev Verma/Hindustan Times via Getty Images)
People rest under the shade of a tree in Delhi [Getty Images]