A representational picture: Bihar Patna blasts before Modi's rally
Prime Minister Narendra ModiReuters

As the Bihar Assembly election nears, political rivalry is heating up in the state, even prompting acts of vandalism by the supporters of parties in the fray.

Posters of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) were torn up in Gaya in Bihar, where he is scheduled to address a party rally on Sunday.

The incident is likely to create tensions in the state, especially as it comes after the murder of a BJP leader in Patna on Thursday.

Avinash Kumar, who was the general secretary of BJP's Bihar unit, was chased and shot dead by three people. The attack was caught on a CCTV camera.

Images of torn up posters, which show Modi's face cut out, were shared by ANI news agency on Saturday. 

The BJP, which is looking for electoral redemption in Bihar following the Delhi disaster, is pitted against the joint forces of Nitish Kumar's Janata Dal United and Lalu Prasad's RJD.

The Bihar elections are likely to be held in October.

Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Nasim Zaidi arrived in Patna on Friday, and is likely to announce the dates for the election soon.

Modi had visited Bihar last month to kick off BJP's election campaign and had also launched some developmental projects.

While Modi showed polite camaraderie with Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar while they shared the stage, the two have since launched attacks on one another. 

During the BJP's 'Parivartan Rally' in Bihar on 25 July, Modi had said that Kumar practises 'political untouchability'. 

"There seems to be some problem in his DNA because the DNA of democracy is not like that. In democracy, you give respect even to your political rivals," Modi had said. 

Kumar had taken umbrage to the statement, stating that the PM had insulted not only him but the state as well. 

"I am Son of Bihar so biologically my DNA is similar to that of people of Bihar (sic)", Nitish Kumar said on Twitter.