The Indian rupee tumbled by 34 paise to an almost 28-month low of Rs. 49.82 per US dollar in early trade on the Interbank Foreign Exchange on Friday as the American currency firmed up against other major rivals overseas.

Forex dealers attributed the rupee’s fall to a level last seen in May, 2009, to strong dollar demand from importers and some banks and dollar gains against other currencies.

They said the continued slide in the equity market also put pressure on the Indian rupee.

On Thursday, the rupee had fallen by 124 paise to close at at a two—and—a half—year low of Rs 49.57/58 against the American currency.

More In: Markets | Business