A youth leader of the Trinamool Congress was shot dead by two men on a motorcycle near a railway station in West Bengal's Howrah on Tuesday, officials said.
As the news of Dharmendra Singh's death spread, his supporters poured onto the streets at Shibpur and set motorcycles on fire and vandalized buses and shops, sending the locals into a panic.
A huge police force was rushed to the area but the vandalism continued for a couple of hours before the situation was brought under control around 8 pm, according to officials.
"He was on a motorbike with another person. Unknown persons on bikes shot him from point-blank range. Doctors declared him brought dead after he was taken to a hospital. We are investigating the matter," a police officer said.
The police are exploring the possibility of personal enmity as the reason behind the murder though Howrah Trinamool Congress leader Arup Roy has hinted at a conspiracy behind the attack.
"Dharmendra Singh was shot in the head. The police are investigating. I think there may be a conspiracy," Mr Roy said. When asked if the opposition has any role in the shooting, Mr Roy said, "Maybe. But I won't comment until the police investigation is over."
The BJP has denied any link to the incident and said the shooting was possibly a result of an internal party fight.