Sensex and Nifty started on a higher note today.New Delhi: Indian equity benchmarks on Monday traded higher in a volatile early session. The domestic indices fluctuated between gains and losses during initial deals.Asian shares were mostly in the red as Wall Street futures slipped amid future interest rate hike worries by the U.S. Federal Reserve to tame inflation. Trends on the Nifty Futures on Singapore Exchange (SGX Nifty) indicated a gap-down start for the domestic indices.The 30-share BSE Sensex jumped 208 points or 0.41 per cent to 51,568 in early trade, while the broader NSE Nifty moved 69 points or 0.45 per cent up to trade at 15,362. Both the indices slumped sharply last week.Mid- and small-cap shares were mixed today as Nifty Midcap 100 slipped 0.07 per cent and small-cap edged 0.03 per cent higher.Nine out of the 15 sector gauges — compiled by the National Stock Exchange — were trading in the green. Sub-indexes Nifty Bank and Nifty IT were outperforming the NSE platform by rising as much as 0.54 per cent and 0.54 per cent, respectively.On the stock-specific front, Sun Pharma was the top Nifty gainer as the stock soared 1.53 per cent to Rs 805.50. HDFC, Hindustan Unilever, Apollo Hospitals and Asian Paints were also among the gainers.However, the overall market breadth was slightly weak as 1,047 shares were advancing while 1,366 were declining on BSE.On the 30-share BSE index, HDFC, HUL, Sun Pharma, HDFC Bank, Asian Paints, Dr Reddy’s, Wipro and UltraTech Cement were among the top gainers.In contrast, Tata Steel, PowerGrid, M&M, L&T and Bajaj Finserv were trading in the red.Sensex had declined 135 points or 0.26 per cent to settle at an over one-year low of 51,360.42 on Friday, while Nifty had lost 67 points or 0.44 per cent to end at 15,293.50.