The Indian equity benchmarks were on track to close higher for second straight session led by gains in ICICI Bank, ITC, Axis Bank, Infosys and HCL Technologies. For most part of the day, the benchmarks traded in a narrow band but buying in banking stocks in late morning deals helped Sensex and Nifty break the rangebound trade on the upside. The Sensex rose as much as 277 points and Nifty 50 index was firm above its important psychological level of 15,850.
As of 2:25 pm, the Sensex was up 190 points at 53,026 and Nifty 50 index advanced 49 points to 15,873.
Shares of food delivery firm Zomato nearly doubled in value in debut, in the first stock market listing of a startup valued at more than $1 billion. Zomato shares surged over 80 per cent to hit high of Rs 138.90.
Nine of 11 sector gauges compiled by the National Stock Exchange were trading higher led by the Nifty FMCG index's 1 per cent gain. Nifty Realty, Bank, Private Bank and Financial Service indexes also rose between 0.6-1 per cent.
On the other hand, Media and Auto indices were trading lower.
Mid- and small-cap shares were trading mixed as Nifty Midcap 100 index rose 0.23 per cent and Nifty Smallcap 100 index slipped 0.39 per cent.
ITC and ICICI Bank were among the top Nifty gainers, the stocks rose nearly 3 per cent a day ahead of their June quarter earnings. Wipro, SBI Life, Tech Mahindra, Sun Pharma, Axis Bank, HCL Technologies, Tata Consumer Products and Bajaj Finserv also rose between 1-2.4 per cent.
On the flipside, Reliance Industries slipped 0.4 per cent ahead of its earnings due later in the day. Tata Motors, Larsen & Toubro, Grasim Industries, IndusInd Bank, UPL, Indian Oil, Shree Cements, Asian Paints and Hindustan Unilever were also among the losers.