'Keeping up with TikTok bankrupts youths' - Sivarraajh

'Early setback in life when it should be a time for new beginnings'

09 Mar 2024 09:30am
Photo for illustration purpose only. - Illustrated by Sinar Daily
Photo for illustration purpose only. - Illustrated by Sinar Daily

SHAH ALAM - Former MIC Youth chief Senator Datuk Sivarraajh Chandran has expressed concern over the alarming rate of bankruptcy among young people, citing that nearly 37 per cent of them have filed for bankruptcy.

He stressed that this trend was distressing as it often signalled an early setback in life when it should be a time for new beginnings.

During a recent episode of the Sana Sini podcast, Sivarraajh noted a growing trend among youngsters who aspire for immediate wealth, influenced by the pervasive culture of social media.

"Many individuals opt for a lifestyle beyond their means, resorting to debt as a means to achieve perceived comfort, which can be deemed a concerning phenomenon," he said.

Joining the conversation, Kota Kemuning assemblyman Preakas Sampunathan pointed out the lack of discernment among today's youth, particularly in distinguishing between real-life scenarios and the exaggerated portrayals often seen on platforms like TikTok.

He likened this discrepancy to the use of body doubles in movie stunt scenes, suggesting that many young people struggle to differentiate reality from fiction.

Sivarraajh shared anecdotes of Indian youths approaching him for assistance with loan applications to kickstart businesses, only to find their efforts hindered by credit card debts and other financial liabilities.

"Around 40 per cent of these cases were linked to private or personal loans, reflecting the pervasive issue of financial mismanagement," he said.

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In response, Preakas acknowledged the noble intentions of individuals seeking loans for business ventures but stressed the importance of prudent financial planning.

He pointed out the necessity of having a contingency plan to mitigate risks and ensure the timely repayment of loans, cautioning against embarking on entrepreneurial endeavors without adequate experience or foresight.

The Malaysian Consumer and Borrower Settlement Association (4PM) recently highlighted a concerning trend, with approximately 15 bankruptcies reported daily among young individuals.

Their data revealed that the highest number of bankruptcies occurred among individuals aged 35 to 44, pointing to the urgency for government intervention to address this critical issue.

On a separate matter, Sivarraajh recounted a personal experience of falling victim to a scam, where he received a fraudulent call from an individual posing as a close associate in urgent need of financial assistance.

Despite initially agreeing to transfer funds, Sivarraajh grew suspicious and eventually reached out to verify the authenticity of the request, uncovering the elaborate scam.

The conversation concluded with laughter as the hosts reflected on the prevalent challenges of financial literacy and scam awareness, highlighting the need for greater vigilance and skepticism in navigating today's complex digital landscape.