Kamlesh Tiwari, a leader of the little-known Hindu Samaj Party and a former leader of the Hindu Mahasabha, was shot dead in Lucknow on Friday. The 45-year-old, who was rushed to a hospital’s trauma centre with severe injuries, died during treatment, the police said.

It is not yet clear if Kamlesh Tiwari was shot or stabbed or both. A pistol was recovered from the spot but the body reportedly had stab wounds, sources said, even as police is investigating the case.

An assistant of Tiwari said reporters that the murderers had called Tiwari before meeting him after 10 minutes. They were welcomed with a cup of tea and snacks and Tiwari was engaged in a talk with them. The helper also said reporters that the discussion was about the marriage of a Muslim girl and a Hindu boy.

As the discussions were on, the helper was asked to go and fetch him some masala. However, by the time he returned, the guests had fled and he found Tiwari dead. Tiwari’s helper said that the murderers were wearing clothes in saffron colours and asserted that although he didn’t know them, he will be able to identify them if he sees them again.

Kamlesh’s supporters say his life was in constant danger. There were repeated calls threatening his life and there was a murder attempt too. Despite this, the state government gave him only a gunman, who was not present on the spot. Supporters say that Kamlesh had earlier requested the government to provide Y-category security, however, to find the file stuck in government offices for 3 years.

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