Belying expectations of a rally,the benchmark Sensex on the Bombay Stock Exchange nosedived by over 320 points as the interim Budget,which was widely anticipated to announce stimulating measures for the industry,turned out to be a damp squib.
With investors exercising caution,the markets had a weak opening before the presentation of interim Budget by Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee at 1100 hours in Parliament.
The BSE barometer went on to post further losses with investors offloading as the finance minister pegged the fiscal deficit at six per cent in the next fiscal.
The BSE barometer finally closed the day at 9305.45 points,lower by 329.29 points,the biggest drop since Feb 2.
Realty stocks,which surged in early trade on anticipation of emphasis on real estate and hospitality sectors in the interim Budget,ended the day with heavy losses and the sectoral index dipped by a sharp 4.58 per cent,while all the other sectoral indices also closed in the red.
The Nifty on NSE also fell by 99.85 points at 2,848.50.
Market heaviest RIL led the fall and closed lower by 3.42 per cent. Blue-chip ICICI Bank was another big loser at 5.79 per cent. Jaiprakash Associates at 7.88 per cent and Reliance Infra at 6.35 per cent were the other major losers among the elite Sensex club.