The Indian stock markets key indices slumped by more than 1.2 per cent on Tuesday on negative cues from the global equities amid reports of escalations in Ukraine-Russia tensions. The benchmark Sensex started the day with a loss of 1,244.95 points at 56,438.64 points from its previous day’s close at 57,683.59 points. The Sensex recovered some losses later in the day. At 11.54 am, the 30 stock S&P BSE Sensex was trading 716.92 points or 1.24 per cent lower at 56,966.67 points. The Sensex had lost 149.38 points or 0.26 per cent on Monday.

The broader Nifty 50 of the National Stock Exchange was trading 214.70 points or 1.25 per cent down at 16,991.95 points against its previous day’s close at 17,206.65 points. The Nifty opened deep in the red at 16,847.95 points and slumped to a low of 16,843.80 points in the intra-day.

The Indian equities markets have come under heavy selling pressure tracking weakness in major indices across the world on escalations in tensions between Russia and the United States and major European countries over the Ukraine issue. The United States and its European allies are set to impose new sanctions on Russia after President Vladimir Putin formally recognised two breakaway regions in eastern Ukraine. The move is likely to further escalate the tensions in the region.

There was across the board selling pressure in the Indian stock markets. All the 30 scrips that are part of the Sensex were trading in the red. TCS slumped 3.82 per cent. Tata Steel plunged 3.77 per cent. Bharti Airtel dipped 2.78 per cent. State Bank of India tumbled 2.33 per cent to Rs 499.90.

Dr Reddy’s Laboratories 1.92 per cent down at Rs 4215; L&T 1.94 per cent down at Rs 1826.90; Maruti Suzuki 1.82 per cent down at Rs 8455.25; HCL Technologies 1.72 per cent down at Rs 1145 and UltraTech Cement 1.67 per cent down at Rs 6703.95 were among the major Sensex losers.