The index recovered after briefly slumping as much as 0.95 per cent in the morning, after multiple trades were placed shorting index futures in early trades.
Gains also tracked higher global shares ahead of a euro zone monetary policy decision later on Thursday and emerging stocks rebounding from this week's five-month lows.
Investors, however, remain cautious with the US non-farm payrolls report as well as India's advance economic growth estimates for 2013/14 looming on Friday.
The Nifty rose 0.23 per cent, or 13.90 points, to end at 6,036.30.
The Sensex rose 49.71 points, to end at 20,310.74, rising for a third consecutive session.
Among blue-chip shares, ITC gained 1.8 per cent, while HDFC Bank rose 1.5 per cent.
Coal India surged 4.7 per cent while Hindustan Unilever rose 2.9 per cent.
Tata Communications shares surged 8 per cent after South Africa's Vodacom Group said it was close to finalising negotiations with the company for the purchase of its Neotel unit.
ACC gained 1.8 per cent after the company's December-quarter consolidated net profit rose 10.5 per cent to Rs. 276 crore, beating some analysts' estimates.
Jet Airways surged 10.7 per cent after CCI on Wednesday approved Etihad Airways' 50.1 per cent stake buy in its frequent flier unit.
However, IT companies fell after Cognizant Technology Solutions Corp forecast 2014 revenue below analysts' expectations on Wednesday, raising concerns about the sector's growth prospects, dealers said.
Infosys fell 0.5 per cent while Tata Consultancy Services ended 0.9 per cent lower.