After surging ahead for nearly four hours of trading, the bulls on Monday gave in to the bears, keeping just a marginal lead at the end of the day and the benchmark Sensex settled with a gain of mere 20 points.
After gaining over 200 points in the intra-day trade, the Bombay Stock Exchange's 30-share barometer index closed at 14,083.41 points, up 19.60 points from its previous close of 14,063.81 points.
The Sensex kept in positive zone for more than four hours after opening on a strong note nearly 100 points higher at 14,170.81, but lost steam after hitting its day's high at 14,268.91.
The Sensex even ventured into negative territory for a brief period towards the end of the trading session, hitting a low of 14,057.63, but managed to settle with a modest gain on the back of some late-hour buying in select blue chips.
The National Stock Exchange's 50-share index Nifty settled just 0.60 points higher at 4,145.60, after hitting a high of 4,205.20 and low of 4,134.95 in the intraday trade.
Two-wheeler major Hero Honda, tobacco-to-FMCG giant ITC and Birla Group's aluminium making firm Hindalco were the three biggest gainers among the 30 Sensex scrips, registering gains between 2.0-3.5 per cent.
Shares of housing finance giant HDFC and IT major Infosys also advanced by more than one per cent, followed by modest gains in HDFC Bank, NTPC, Reliance Industries, BHEL and Satyam Computer.
Anil Ambani group's Reliance Communications was the biggest loser on the Sensex, with over two per cent fall in its share price, followed by losses ranging from 1-2 per cent in the shares of Grasim Industries, SBI, Dr Reddy's Labs, Tata Steel and Wipro.