India, Dec. 2 -- Indian equity benchmarks made optimistic start and are trading firm with gains of around half a percent each in early deals on Monday. Gains in Telecom, Energy and TECK shares supported the markets. Investors are eyeing manufacturing PMI data to be out later in the day. Traders took encouragement with Finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman's statement that several significant steps in structural reforms have been taken in the past few months and responses/interventions addressing the needs of the economy will continue, indicating more relief measures could be on the anvil if so needed. Some support also came with report that festive season demand helped the government collect Rs 1.03 lakh crore in goods and services tax (GST) ...