The Indian education system is one of the most tightly controlled in the world. The government regulates who you can teach, what you can teach them and what you can charge them. It also has huge regulatory bottlenecks. There are considerable entry barriers: Universities can be set up only through acts of legislation, approval procedures for starting new courses are cumbersome, syllabi revision is slow, and accreditation systems are extremely weak and arbitrary. The regulators permit relatively little autonomy for institutions and variation amongst them.
Over-regulation has produced the crisis of higher education that is the context of the current agitation. The shortage of quality institutions is a product of India’s regulatory structures. Increased public investment that the government has promised is absolutely necessary to increase access. But this investment will not yield much if India’s regulatory regime remains rigid.
From this YaleGlobal article by Pratap Bhanu Mehta.
I sincerly wish Mehta hadn't pushed the National Knowledge Commission into taking a stand on the quota issue. It's a pity that, in the ugly aftermath, he has had to resign his Membership of the NKC; his excellent ideas on how to design and implement a superior higher ed system in India could have formed the right framework for the Commission to build on.