Bombay Stock Exchange's Sensex crossed 19,000 points, its highest in 15 months, in morning trade Thursday on hopes of additional pro-reform decisions by the government and the strengthening rupee.  

National Stock Exchange’s Nifty crossed 5,800. The Sensex opened higher at 18,939.75 and surged to cross the 19,000 mark that was last seen July 15, 2011.

The 30-share Sensex continued the gains and traded at 19,068.31, up 197.00 points or 1.04 percent from the previous close while the Nifty was at 5,807.25, 63.75 points or 1.2 percent up at 1.00 p.m. local time.

A cabinet meeting Thursday is expected to take decisions on raising the Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) cap in insurance to 49 percent and opening up a pension sector to foreign investors to boost the economy, Reuters reported quoting a minister.

All major sectoral indices, except the health care and IT sector, were gaining on the BSE with Realty (4.79 percent) and Bankex (2.27 percent) indices leading the surge.  IT and health care sectors were trading flat.

 The top gainers were Indiabulls Real Estate 8.30 per cent), Lanco Infratech Ltd (7.74 per cent), BHEL (6.65 per cent), HDIL (6.45 per cent) Unitech Ltd. (5.63 per cent) and ICICI Bank (3.33 per cent).

The major losers in BSE Sensex were Guj. Gas Co. Ltd (9.18 per cent) and Hexaware Technologies (3.40 percent).

The market indices also benefited from the continued inflow of foreign funds from the foreign equity investors and a strengthening rupee that reached 51.97 against the dollar in the morning trade.

The CNX Midcap index rose 1.03 percent and the BSE Smallcap index was up 0.80 percent.

Rupee Breaches 52-Mark Against The Dollar

The Indian rupee continued to trade firm at below 52 per dollar level in the afternoon session gaining from the huge capital inflows to the equity market and the dollar selling by the financial institutions.

The rupee went up to 51.87 against the dollar, a five-and-half month high, for the first time since April 20 last in the morning trading.   

Analysts expected that the rupee would appreciate further and cross the 50 mark if the government came up with additional reforms in the cabinet meeting Thursday.

"If the Nifty hits the 6,300 mark, the rupee might rise to 47 to the dollar," independent analyst Sarvendra Srivastava told NDTV.