Mumbai: Indian stocks rose, driving the benchmark index to its best month since April 2008, on speculation overseas investors stepped up purchases because they expect stimulus measures to help revive the economy.

Infosys Technologies Ltd, the country's second-largest software developer, climbed 1.7 per cent. Tata Consultancy Services Ltd, the largest software exporter, added 2.9 per cent. The first gain in US home sales since July and an increase in durable goods orders prompted speculation the largest market for India's software will rebound.

"Data points from the US improved over the past few days and that has prompted investors to return," said Ajay Bodke, who helps manage about $2.7 billion (Dh9.9 billion) in assets at IDFC Asset Management Co in Mumbai. "Risk aversion is receding."

The Bombay Stock Exchange's Sensitive Index, or Sensex, added 1.5 per cent to 9,708.50. The index posted an 9.2 per cent advance in March. For the quarter the benchmark climbed 0.6 per cent, its first advance in five.

The S&P CNX Nifty Index on the National Stock Exchange climbed 1.4 per cent to 3,020.95. The BSE 200 Index rose 1.8 per cent to 1,140.43. Nifty futures for April delivery advanced 1 per cent to 3,017.

Infosys rose 1.7 per cent to 1,323.90 rupees. Tata Consultancy climbed 2.9 per cent to 538.55 rupees.

Overseas investors were net buyers of Indian equities for eight straight days ending March 26, buying about $900 million worth of stocks, according to data from the market regulator.

The MSCI Asia Pacific Index climbed 12 per cent in March as governments from the US and Japan widened measures to ease the financial crisis.