Moeen Ali was effusive in his praise for Stokes, who made 128, and said the all-rounder can mould his batting according to situations.
Ravindra Jadeja had the best figures amongst the five Indian bowlers ending with 3/86 from 30 overs but on the second day got to bowl only 9 overs.
In reply to England's 537, India were 63/0 at stumps. Here's a look at the five talking points from the day's play.
England put up 537 on the board in the first inning of the opening Test against India in Rajkot.
Harbhajan Singh says that he loves wickets, where matches continue for at least four and half days.
Ben Stokes survived two dropped catches, two run out chances and a tough stumping opportunity before he was finally out for an eventful 128.
Ben Stokes and Moeen Ali hundreds on day two help England pile 537 runs in first innings; India reach 63/0 at stumps.
James Anderson is coming off a shoulder injury which ruled him out of the drawn series in Bangladesh.
Moeen Ali scored his fourth Test hundred against the Asian sides with two centuries against Sri Lanka and one each against Pakistan and India.
Unlike Joe Root, Moeen Ali just kept moving forward towards the little red thing swirling across to him.
Joe Root hit the first ton by a visiting batsman in India since 2013, Moeen Ali one run away as India limp on Day 1 of the first Test in Rajkot.
Joe Root's splendid knock of 124 is his eleventh hundred in Tests - his third vs India and his first in India.
England had reasons to celebrate after the first day's play against India in Rajkot with things taking off in resounding manner.
Joe Root led the way with a sparkling century and with Moeen Ali, unbeaten on 99, helped England finish Day 1 on 311 for four.
Joe Root added that the right-left combination of himself and Moeen Ali did not allow the Indian bowlers to build up pressure.
Both England openers - Alastair Cook and Haseeb Hameed - were dropped early in the morning session of day's play.
England were at a comfortable 311/4 after the first day's play against India in Rajkot.
Joe Root hit 124 and Moeen Ali was unbeaten on 99 as the visitors finished the opening day of the first Test in a strong position on 311 for 4.
Ind Vs Eng , 1st Test Match, Rajkot: Joe Root and Moeen Ali's 174 run stand put England in a strong position on Day 1.
Joe Root's ton and Moeen Ali's unbeaten 99 take England to 311/4 at stumps on Day 1 of the first Test against India.
England were in a comfortable position at 311/4 after the end of the first day against India in Rajkot.
Decision Review System (DRS) has been implemented for the first time in Test matches in India against England.
Joe Root's dismissal brought back memories of Herschelle Gibbs' catch of Steve Waugh in the 1999 World Cup.
Joe Root scored his 11th Test century when he picked up a double to race off to his third ton against India.
India reduced England to 102/3 as they recovered from three dropped catches in the first session on Day 1 of 1st Test.