A trader in his mid-50s was found dead inside his shop on Baithakkhana Road near Sealdah on Tuesday morning.
Police said Biren Nandi, a wholesaler of chocolates and chips, might have been murdered as he had head injuries and the preliminary post-mortem report suggests smothering, too.
One of Nandi's suppliers was the first to spot him lying on the floor of his shop when he came in the morning, the police said.
"The supplier found the shop's shutter partially open," an officer of Muchipara police station said. "When he did not get any response, he stepped into the shop to find Nandi on the floor."
Nandi, originally from Bankura, used to live in the shop with four employees, he said.
"The employees used to sleep on the mezzanine floor. We have come across multiple witnesses who have confirmed that Nandi had been seen with the employees late on Monday. All four are missing," the officer said.
The police are still to establish the motive for Nandi's murder.
2 killed, 1 injured
Two men were killed and another was injured in two road accidents on Tuesday. Tapan Kumar Das, 47, was killed when a goods vehicle hit the car he was driving on MG Road in Tollygunge around 4.30am. Hirendra Nath Mondal, 31, who was in the car sustained injuries. Around noon, a private bus ran over a man at the Taltala Avenue-SN Banerjee Road crossing. He was declared dead at hospital.