Stocks of oil marketing companies fell by as much as four per cent on the BSE after a decision on fuel price hike was deferred on Monday, while the broader market was trading in the positive.

The shares of state-run ONGC touched a low of Rs.1,156.05, down 2.47 per cent while HPCL fell by 3.74 per cent to Rs.322.25 in the early hours of trade on the Bombay Stock Exchange.

On Monday, a panel of ministers deferred a decision on raising fuel prices due to a lack of quorum, even though it appeared there was consensus on freeing petrol prices from government control and a hike of up to Rs.2 per litre in diesel rates.

Meanwhile, the 30-share index Sensex was trading up 77.27 points, or 0.46 per cent, at 16,858.34 points at 0941 hrs.

The BSE Oil&Gas sectoral index fell by 59.64 points, or 0.59 per cent, to a low of 9,895.32 points.

Other oil companies trading low were IOC (3.42 per cent), BPCL (3.31 per cent), and Gail India (0.40 per cent).

An Empowered Group of Ministers (EGoM) headed by Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee could not arrive at a decision in the absence of four key ministers, including Railway Minister Mamata Banerjee and Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar, a source privy to the deliberations at the EGOM said on Monday.