Sullia: Unidentified assailants allegedly shot dead a man in Dakshina Kannada district early Thursday morning.

The victim, identified as Sampath, was a key accused in the murder of BJP leader Samaje Kalagi Balachandra in Madikeri a year ago.

Sampath was shot from close range by the assailants who also attacked him with machetes at Shantinagar in Sullia taluk.

Dakshina Kannada SP BM Laxmi Prasad said that the shots were fired from a long-barrel weapon. Sampath Kumar aged 35 years, was going out of his house when he was attacked with machetes.

Police have said that the machetes had scored his torso, neck, left arm and head.

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Though Sampath was taken to the government hospital at Sullia, doctors declared him dead on arrival.

Sources said the gang of miscreants arrived in a car at around 6:30am, opened fire at Sampath and fled from the location in the same vehicle.

The police have registered a case and have begun an investigation.