That is the headline on this article by Samar Halarnkar in the Hindustan Times. It's interesting to read that as an Englishman, given that England is often said to be unusual in its continuing support for Test cricket. That in itself is hard to judge right now, given that the sparse crowds for the West Indies series might be blamed on poor scheduling and cold weather, and an Ashes series is always going to be a draw.
I'll bow to Halarnkar's personal knowledge when it comes to India, and it's obvious to anybody that Test crowds there have declined in recent years. It's also fair to say that in reputation at least (whether fair or not is not the point here) admiration for India's impressive rise is tempered somewhat by a feeling that it's in danger of losing some of its soul in its ever more intense quest for the mighty dollar. However, I'm not entirely convinced by Halarnkar's use of statistics. To quote from the article:
In 2004, 51 Test matches were played worldwide. In 2005, 49. In 2006, 46. In 2007, 31. In 2008, 47. In 2009, 17. Yes, I can see the spike in 2008. But it’s just that, a brave spike in the declining career graph of cricket.
That sequence really tells us nothing useful, for several reasons. Firstly, the sequence is far too short to draw any sensible conclusions: if the trend is implacably downward over the next five years, then there'll be a point to be made. The inclusion of 2009 in the list is silly: we may be almost exactly halfway through the year, but here in England we've played only two-sevenths of our Test season. So the list more fairly reads 49, 46, 31, 47. I don't think you can tell anything much from that. (Correction: 51, 49, 46, 31, 47. The point stands, however.)
Secondly, a few years earlier, there had been a significant increase in Test cricket: Zimbabwe and Bangladesh joined the party, and England started to stage seven Tests each summer instead of six. The presence or absence of a two-match series against Bangladesh really doesn't tell us much. And of course quality and quantity are not the same thing: for all the years Australia were thrashing England, they consistently played far less domestic first-class cricket than we did.
I'm not trying to stick my fingers in my ears and pretend Twenty20 hadn't happened - though it might be noted that India are still startlingly reluctant to host T20 internationals, a lack of experience which may not have helped them in the recent tournament. I do think Test cricket is under threat if not managed considerately, and that even we in England shouldn't go taking it for granted. However, I think Halarnkar is wrong to extrapolate the situation in India to the cricketing world as a whole.