Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Manish Shukla died at a private hospital on EM Bypass in Kolkata on Sunday night less than three hours after he was shot multiple times in the back and upper torso at Titagarh in North 24 Parganas.
The assailants came on motorcycles and their faces were covered with masks, said BJP workers present at the spot. Two BJP workers also sustained injuries.
Shukla, who defected from the Trinamool Congress (TMC) two years ago, was a popular organisational leader. The news of his death led to tension in large parts of the Barrackpore Lok Sabha constituency of which Titagarh is a part.
Shukla was shot not far from Titagarh police station and sophisticated weapons were used, alleged BJP's Barrackpore Lok Sabha MP Arjun Singh, who too defected from the TMC in 2018.
"We were at a programme together earlier in the evening. He was attacked after returning to his office," Singh said. "Police were behind the attack. We saw more than eight bullet injuries on his body. I am also a target," Singh said while making the allegations.
Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar took up the issue and summoned the home secretary and Director General of Police to the Raj Bhawan at 10 am on Monday.
"ACS Home @MamataOfficial and DGP @WBPolice have been summoned at 10 am tomorrow in the wake of worsening law and order situation leading to dastardly killing of Manish Shukla, Councillor, Titagarh Municipality in political party office," Dhankhar tweeted at 11.40pm.
"Shukla was murdered. We demand a probe by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) into the role of the police. Arjun Singh's life is also in danger. Mamata Banerjee cannot rule the state with terror," said BJP national general secretary Kailash Vijayvargiya, who was in Kolkata.
TMC's Panihati legislator, Nirmal Ghosh, said the ruling party had no role in the attack. "This is a fallout of rivalry inside the BJP," he said.
BJP national secretary Arvind Menon, who was also in Kolkata, rushed to the hospital with senior leaders.
Barrackpore police commissioner Manoj Verma deployed rapid action force (RAF) on the streets in view of the tension. "We cannot say anything without conducting a proper investigation," he said.
BJP workers set up a blockade on BT Road, demanding the arrest of the culprits. The party also announced a 12-hour bandh along the entire stretch from Kanchrapara to Titagarh on Monday.
Shukla was also an outgoing councillor of the Titagarh municipality where the term of the elected civic body has ended. Elections are due in around 110 civic bodies in the state.