New York: A 24-year old Indian student from Odisha, pursuing a management degree in Boston University, was shot and killed near his campus by an unidentified assailant.
The student, whom a Boston police official identified as K Seshadri Rao, was shot in the head and leg in the early hours of April 19.
The young man, a native of India`s Odisha state, was a student at the university`s Graduate School of Management.
The University`s Facebook page was flooded with messages of condolences for Rao with students expressing concern over the security in the campus.
The police said they had got a call at around three in the morning of April 19 about a body lying in front of a house nearly a mile from the campus in Brighton, a residential area just off the busy Commonwealth Avenue in Boston.
When police reached the spot, the victim was receiving medical assistance from the Boston Fire Department as he was suffering from severe head trauma.
However, he was pronounced dead at the scene.
Rao is the fourth victim of homicide in Boston in the past one week.
Police Commissioner Edward Davis said police are stepping up patrols across the city in neighbourhoods affected by the surge in violence that has left several others injured.
Davis did not comment on whether Rao was targeted by some gang or if the attack was random.
He said investigators are pursuing several leads. No arrests have been made in the case yet.
Deputy Superintendent Kevin Buckley said just over half the cases this week appear to be gang-related, but they did not provide specifics.
Preliminary investigation indicated that Rao was suffering
from gunshot wounds.
"We have added patrols for the neighbourhood and detectives continue to look for clues in this tragic incident," Boston Police Captain James Hussey said.
In a statement, university president Robert Brown said Boston police and university police are investigating the circumstances of the "dreadful crime" which he said appears to be an isolated incident.
"We are deeply saddened at the loss of one of our students. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the victim`s family and friends. And we are outraged at this crime," Brown said.
"I want to assure all students, whether they live on campus or off campus, that public safety is a priority for this institution".
In India, Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik strongly condemned the killing of Rao and said he would take up the matter with the Ministry of External Affairs.
"I strongly condemn killing of the Odia student in the US. I will take up the matter with the Ministry of External Affairs today," Patnaik told reporters.
Rao was scheduled to complete an 18-month-long course next month and was offered a three-month paid internship in a company.
His father K Sudhakar Rao, a bank employee in Odisha, was informed by officials of the external affairs ministry about the tragic incident.
"I got verification call from the external affairs ministry about the body around 2 am (Indian time) on Thursday night," Sudhakar Rao said.
Seshadri, survived by his parents and a brother, had done his schooling at Jeypore and Cuttack and B Tech from the National Institute of Technology (NIT) in Karnataka.