* NSE index up 0.24 pct, BSE index 0.24 pct higher
* Idea Cellular gains over 5 pct
By Tanvi Mehta
Feb 20 Indian shares gained slightly on Monday
as a rally in telecom shares was offset by profit-booking, a
session after indexes hit their highest since September.
Telecom shares soared after a report from news agency PTI,
carried in The Economic Times, said Vodafone Group would
likely finalise talks for a merger with Idea Cellular
within a month, citing unidentified sources.
Idea shares gained as much as 5.5 percent.
Meanwhile, Tata Teleservices (Maharashtra) Ltd
rose as much as 9.9 percent after The Economic Times, reported
the company was seeking to be part of an entity that would
include Reliance Communications, Aircel and MTS.
However, broader sentiment was largely cautious after recent
strong gains in markets, with Asian shares largely mixed ahead
of key U.S. Federal Reserve events, including minutes of the
last policy meeting and speeches by five heads of Fed regional
"Some amount of profit-taking might be happening. There
seems to be a lack of interest. Will have to wait and watch,"
said Deven Choksey, managing director at KR Choksey Shares and
The broader NSE index was up 0.24 percent at 8,843.3
as of 0623 GMT, led by gains in the IT and telecom sectors.
The benchmark BSE index was 0.24 percent higher at
Among other movers, shares of Havells India Ltd
and Lloyd Electric and Engineering fell after they
said on Sunday that Havells would buy a unit of Lloyd that sells
air conditioners and televisions in a 15.5 billion-rupee deal
(Reporting by Tanvi Mehta in Bengaluru; Editing by Sunil Nair)