New Delhi– India’s eight core industries (ECI) on Monday showed a rise of 6.4 percent in March, as higher output of electricity, cement and fertilisers accelerated production.

The select factory output index which represents major infrastructure sectors had risen by 5.7 percent in February 2016.

The index comprises 38 percent of the total weightage of items included in the Index of Industrial Production (IIP).

According to the data furnished by the commerce and industry ministry, the combined index of ECI stood at 188.0 in March 2016, which was 6.4 percent higher compared to the corresponding month in 2015.

Under the ECI, electricity, cement and fertilisers industries reported healthy output.

Electricity generation, which has the highest weightage of 10.32 percent in the IIP, augmented by 11.3 percent in March, as compared with the corresponding month of 2015.

Steel production, the second most important component as per weightage of 6.68 percent, increased by 3.4 percent in the month under review.

Distilling of refinery products, the third most important component as per weightage, increased by 10.8 percent in March, as compared with the corresponding month of 2015.

However, extraction of crude oil, which has a 5.21 percent weightage in IIP, fell by 5.1 percent during last month.

The sub-index for natural gas output, with a weightage of 1.71 percent, also decreased steeply by 10.5 percent in the month under consideration.

Further, coal mining, with a 4.38 percent weightage, increased by 1.7 percent in March.

Cement production, which has a weightage of 2.41 percent, increased 11.9 percent in March 2016 over March 2015.

Fertiliser manufacturing, which has the least weightage of only 1.25 percent, surged the most during last month, with its production increasing by 22.9 percent.