Indian equities markets turned southwards on Monday, aping their global peers, and marked an end to last week's rally that saw a key index breach the psychologically important 10,000-mark and gain over 12 per cent.
The 30-scrip Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) sensitive index (Sensex), which opened at 10,036.8 points on Monday, ended at 9,568.14 - a fall of 480.35 points or 4.78 per cent from its previous close on Friday.
Similarly, the S&P CNX Nifty of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) lost 4.2 per cent from its last close to rule at 2,978.15 points.
The BSE midcap index was ruling 1.48 per cent lower, while the BSE smallcap index was down 1.18 per cent.
Of the 13 sectoral indices on the exchange, the indices for banking, metal and realty stocks ended in the red, signifying heavy selling in such stocks, while healthcare and consumer durables stocks saw selling.
There were only two gainers on the 30-scrip composite Sensex: NTPC, up 0.8 percent at Rs 183.50, and Sun Pharma, up 0.25 per cent at Rs 1,082.20.
Among the losers were Jaiprakash, down 12.34 per cent at Rs 78.50; ICICI Bank, down 12.27 per cent at Rs 337.95; Tata Steel, down 12.24 per cent at Rs 196.15, and Reliance Infra, down 11.43 per cent at Rs 502.45.
However, the overall market sentiment was clearly negative, with 1,471 stocks declining, 904 scrips advancing and 98 remaining unchanged.
In other Asian markets, investor sentiments took a beating as Japan came out with dismal domestic automobile production numbers, plunging 56.2 per cent year-on-year to 481,396 units in February. This is the sector's fifth straight month of decline.
The Hang Seng, a key index of the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, ended trade 4.7 per cent or 663.17 points lower at 13,456.33 points, while a key Japanese index, the Nikkei, closed in the red, 390.89 points down at 8,236.08.
European markets, which came online before Indian bourses ended trade, were in the red with the FTSE in Britain trading 2.18 per cent lower than its previous close.