Value buying, coupled with short covering and positive global markets, marginally lifted the Indian equities markets on Monday.
The key domestic indices closed with subtle gains -- on a flat note -- with healthy buying witnessed in oil and gas, metal and FMCG stocks.
However, depreciation of the rupee and prolonged outflow of foreign funds continued to erode the risk-taking appetite of investors.
The wider 51-scrip Nifty of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) edged up by 12.60 points or 0.16 per cent to 8,126.90 points.
The barometer 30-scrip sensitive index (Sensex) of the BSE, which opened at 26,303.52 points, closed at 26,350.17 points -- up 33.83 points or 0.13 per cent from the previous close at 26,316.34 points.
The Sensex touched a high of 26,413.99 points and a low of 26,183.22 points during the intra-day trade.
The BSE market breadth was skewed in favour of the bulls -- with 1,660 advances and 931 declines.
On Friday, the equity markets closed in the green on the back of short covering, along with value buying and rupee appreciation.
The barometer index was up 456.17 points or 1.76 per cent, while the NSE Nifty gained 148.80 points or 1.87 per cent.
According to Dhruv Desai, Director and Chief Operating Officer of Tradebulls, higher USD/INR futures prices pressurised the price movement of Nifty.
"IT and banking stocks traded with volatile sentiments, while pharma, auto, oil-gas and textile stocks traded with firm sentiments due to buying support at lower levels," Desai said.
"Media-entertainment stocks failed to sustain at higher levels, whereas aviation, FMCG, cement and power stocks traded with firm sentiments."
Anand James, Chief Market Strategist, Geojit BNP Paribas Financial Services, said: "Friday's short covering rallies having revived risk appetite, markets were in no mood to let RBI's (Reserve Bank of India) surprise move douse the upside momentum."
"Expectations that the incremental CRR (cash reserve ratio) hike would be temporary, allowed banking stocks to cut losses, but with bonds and rupee volatile, and with the central bank hard pressed to act in order to maintain financial stability, uncertainty remained a notch higher, restricting gains," James added.
The Indian rupee weakened by 30 paise to close at 68.77 against a US dollar from its previous close of 68.47 to a greenback.
In terms of investments, provisional data with exchanges showed that the foreign institutional investors (FIIs) sold stocks worth Rs 1,436.40 crore, whereas the domestic institutional investors (DIIs) purchased scrips worth Rs 1,233.79 crore.
Sector-wise, the S&P BSE IT index surged by 125.02 ponts, followed by the metal index, which rose by 101.06 points, and the FMCG index, which edged up by 97.50 points.
On the other hand, the S&P BSE banking index plunged by 245.39 points, followed by the consumer durables index, which fell by 132.77 points, and the finance index was down by 24.35 points.
Major Sensex gainers on Monday were: Bharti Airtel, up 5.53 per cent at Rs 317.50; Adani Ports, up 2.60 per cent at Rs 272.20; ITC, up 2.08 per cent at Rs 233.50; ONGC, up 2.07 per cent at Rs 284; and Hero MotoCorp, up 2.05 per cent at Rs 3,101.50.
Major Sensex losers were: State Bank of India (SBI), down 2.82 per cent at Rs 253.60; ICICI Bank, down 1.73 per cent at Rs 255.35; Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), down 1.02 per cent at Rs 2,277.30; Larsen and Toubro (L&T), down 0.99 per cent at Rs 1,356.15; and Mahindra and Mahindra (M&M), down 0.95 per cent at Rs 1,163.90.