NEW DELHI — Two men on a motorcycle roared up beside a Soviet diplomat's car Thursday and fired several shots through the right rear window, killing him instantly, police reported. His wife, with whom he had been shopping, and his driver were slightly hurt by flying glass.
Police identified the diplomat as V. Khitzichenko, 48, a member of the Soviet Embassy's economic affairs section.
Police Commissioner Suryakant S. Jog said that after the driver stopped the car, "the motorcyclists . . . pumped a couple of more rounds from the side and the front."
Jog said Khitzichenko was hit four times--in the right temple, just below the neck, in the chest and in the right wrist. His wife, Nina, 43, and the driver were slightly injured by flying glass and were treated briefly at a hospital, Jog said.
Police described the motorcycle driver as well-built, of medium height and 27 or 28 years of age. The other man was about the same age, had a beard and was about 6 feet tall, they said.
Deputy Police Commissioner B. K. Gupta reported that "witnesses said they were not Europeans." Police said they did not know the gunmen's nationality. No group claimed responsibility for the assassination, and the motive was not immediately clear. Khitzichenko had been in New Delhi for two years.
Police are conducting a nationwide search for another Soviet diplomat, Igor Gezha, who disappeared last Sunday while jogging in a New Delhi park. Gezha, 37, was a third secretary in the embassy's information department. Jog said he suspected a link between Khitzichenko's slaying and the Gezha disappearance.
India has admitted many refugees from the Middle East and Southwest Asia, and terrorist activity has been a growing problem in recent years.
After Gezha disappeared, police checked the offices of Afghan refugees who oppose the Soviet occupation of their country, as well as the offices of Iranian refugees.