The wider 50-scrip Nifty of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) was also trading 50.10 points or 0.58 percent up at 8,736 points.

The US central bank on Wednesday dropped an assurance to be "patient" in raising interest rates and signalled the hike could come by mid-year.

But in a statement issued after a two-day meeting of its policy-making committee, the Federal Reserve also emphasised that it might still delay the decision to raise the rates for the first time since the 2008 financial crisis, until later this year.

The Sensex of the S&P Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE), which opened at 28,805.22 points, was trading at 28,803.18 points (at 1.04 p.m.) in the afternoon session, up 181.06 points or 0.63 percent from the previous day's close at 28,622.12 points.

The Sensex has touched a high of 28,978.74 points and a low of 28,768.63 points in the trade so far.

Almost all the sectors were trading in green. The rally was led by healthcare, consumer durables, capital goods and metal sectors.

The S&P BSE healthcare index surged by 328.52 points, consumer durables index moved up by 238.57 points, capital goods index increased by 180.27 points and metal index inched up by 112.52 points.

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