The 30-stock Bombay Stock Exchange sensitive index (BSE Sensex) on Monday fell by 1.6% or 281.1 points as investors chose to book profits amid weak global cues. This was the biggest fall in the Sensex in percentage terms since May 16.
The broader Nifty of the National Stock Exchange also dipped 1.7% to 5,118 points.
The Rupee weakened by 65 paise to R55.97 against the dollar due to persistent demand for the US currency by importers.
Industry experts said investors sold stocks on Monday on concerns over slowing growth in China, combined with the euro zone crisis and fears over Spain seeking a bailout.
There were also worries that the Indian government might not be able to deliver promised policy reforms. Shares of Indian retail companies fell after Samajwadi Party and Left parties wrote to the Prime Minister opposing the foreign direct investment (FDI) in retail.
“In the day there was selling pressure in metal stocks on concerns of Chinese growth,” said Alex Mathews, head, research, Geojit BNP Paribas FinServe. “Auto stocks were trading lower on speculation that fuel prices may be hiked. Retail stocks saw some selling on fears of FDI in retail not being allowed.”
Crompton Greeves Pantaloon retail and HDIL were the biggest losers, shedding 9.2%, 7.9% and 6.9% respectively.