Suspected Maoists killed a Trinamool Congress supporter in West Bengal on Wednesday night, targeting a ruling party worker for the first time after assembly elections.
The rebels shot Rabindranath Mishra, 46, at Dhangri village under Jhargram police station, about 150 km west of Kolkata, in West Midnapore district.
Villagers said 10-12 men carrying firearms came on motorcycles and searched for Trinamool supporters. They chased Mishra, a quack, who ran into a house to take shelter. But the men entered the house and killed him.
The killing comes even as chief minister Mamata Banerjee continues to try for peace talks with Maoists.
The murder raises fears of Maoists reverting to terror tactics, thereby testing the patience of Banerjee, who has mandated six civil society members to try and bring the rebels to the negotiating table.
On Thursday, Banerjee announced a compensation of Rs 5 lakh to the victim's family. The state government would pay Rs 2 lakh of the compensation amount and the Centre would give Rs 3 lakh.
Union minister of state for shipping and Trinamool general secretary Mukul Roy visited the village on Thursday.
Roy said, "Those who do not want development have committed this. They also want to upset the process of recruiting 10,000 youth of the area (announced by the CM earlier) in the police."
Mishra's murder comes within 72 hours of the bullet-ridden body of Tapan Deshwali being found in Belpahari village, about 50 km from Jhargram. Deshwali was the first person murdered by rebels after the elections.