Tracking global markets, the benchmark Sensex plunged nearly 217 points in early trading on Friday on the Bombay Stock Exchange on massive selling by funds as well as investors.
The BSE-30 share index, Sensex, which had gained nearly 370 points in the past two sessions, fell by 98.70 points at 14,201.01 in the first five minutes of the trading following a significant fall in stocks of Bajaj Auto.
Similarly, on the wide-based National Stock Exchange, Nifty fell 42.55 points at 4,177.00.
Bajaj Auto stocks continued to remain under pressure after announcement of the company's demerger into three separate entities and discouraging performance. The auto major's stocks crashed nearly 12 per cent, or Rs 304 at Rs 2,199.95.
Other draggers were Reliance Industries, ACC, Infosys Technologies, Satyam Computers, BPCL and Reliance Communications.
Stock brokers said weakening global markets mainly triggered selling by foreign funds. Besides, the investors were acting cautious over inflation figures that are to be announced in the afternoon, they added.