Bengaluru, Jan 14: The Karnataka government on Friday announced doubling the salary of guest lecturers in state-run colleges.

The decision was taken on the basis of a report submitted by the government-constituted three-member committee, and it will benefit thousands of guest lecturers working in government first-grade colleges.

Praising Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai for personally taking interest in addressing the demands of guest lecturers, Higher Education Minister C N Ashwath Narayanan said four types of classifications have been formulated to fix the salaries.

Earlier, the guest lecturers were paid a salary of Rs 13,000 per month for those with UGC-prescribed eligibility and Rs 11,000 per month for those who did not meet it. Now, the salaries have been increased to a minimum of Rs 26,000 per month and a maximum of Rs 32,000 per month.

It has been decided to pay the salaries before the 10th of every month, and to appoint them on an academic year basis (10 months duration) instead of semester basis as had prevailed earlier.

"As UGC-prescribed eligibility conditions will be made mandatory for recruiting guest faculty in the coming years, a three-year time has been set for guest lecturers to clear the required tests/examinations, Narayanan said.

It has been also decided to give weightage to seniority of service while appointing the guest lecturers. To ensure this, a selection list will be prepared based on the existing parameters of the department, it was stated.

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Kolkata, May 23: Alleging that the Union government was using central agencies to interfere in matters of the state, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Monday stated that the BJP-led dispensation was "bulldozing the country's federal structure".

Condemning the Centre's "attempts to interfere", she said that the "situation under the BJP-led government was more adverse than what it was under dictators such as Adolf Hitler, Joseph Stalin or Benito Mussolini".

She also said that central agencies "should be given autonomy" if democracy was to be protected.

"The BJP-led central government is using the central agencies to interfere into the state affairs. It is bulldozing the federal structure of the country. There is a Tughlaqi rule in force," she maintained, addressing a press conference at the state secretariat.

Banerjee, without taking names, said that the "agencies cannot work because there is no autonomy. The autonomy lay in the hands of two persons and the BJP. Such political interference was not prevalent during the time of Adolf Hitler, Joseph Stalin or Benito Mussolini".

Notably, the Bengal CM had long been accusing the BJP government at the Centre of using central agencies like the CBI, the ED to "harass" opponents, including those from her party.

The CBI is looking into a series of cases in Bengal involving violence, rape and smuggling, notable among them being incidents of post-poll violence after last year's assembly polls.

"I want the central government agencies to be given autonomy so that they can work impartially. There should not be any political vendetta. Let the government provide the agency employees with salary and nothing else. I am the first person to raise the issue... this has to be done if we want to save democracy in India," she insisted.

The CM, during the meeting, also criticised the alleged move by the Bihar Police to demolish huts in Malda on Friday.

"A team of police came from Bihar and demolished huts in bordering areas of Malda. You should have informed Bengal Police? What's happening in the country?"

The Bihar Police allegedly demolished nine huts in West Bengal's Malda district along the inter-state boundary and assaulted several residents, including women, when they protested the drive, officials have said.