Gauhati High Court on Monday directed Gauhati University to allow online registration of first-semester students of Assam Engineering College (AEC) so that they can appear in examinations starting on November 29.

The university had stopped registration following a state government decision to shift affiliation of all state government and private engineering colleges under Gauhati and Dibrugarh universities to the Assam Science and Technology University (ASTU), The Telegraph reported.

The university informed the AEC on November 2 that the registration of its first semester students had been stopped with immediate effect.

The decision to bring all engineering colleges, currently affiliated to the two universities, under ASTU has been opposed by students and teachers of the state government engineering colleges affiliated to the two universities.

Apart from the AEC, the other state government engineering colleges to be affected by the change in affiliation are Jorhat Engineering College, Jorhat Institute of Science and Technology and Bineswar Brahma Engineering College in Kokrajhar.

The order was passed by Justice Suman Shyam in connection with a writ petition filed by Arnab Kumar Kalita and 20 other students of different semesters of state government engineering colleges in the state.

The petitioners have challenged the state government’s move to shift the affiliation of their colleges to ASTU.

They said the routine of the first semester exam of the AEC, which will start from November 20, has been released and if the online registration of the first semester students of the AEC is not opened forthwith they will not be able to appear in the exam.

The students argued that ASTU does not have proper infrastructure and accreditation of the National Assessment and Accreditation Council.

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