Debit card for children – Is it necessary???

I have grown up in the family where money is not easily lent to children. For lending money various questions are asked first and a stricter criteria is used while offering it. Especially I have gone through it. My mother never used to give me money without asking me where and how I am going to spend it. So it kept a check on the expenditure and monitored the correct usage of money by me. I used to have only 10 or 20 Rs in my pocket even in my college days.

Sometimes I used to think why such things are done with me? I had some rich friends too. So imitation was very obvious thing when I was in school and college even. I used to get bugged at such behaviour from my mother. My other friends used to come to school by mopeds and bikes and I used to ply by cycle, others were having rich watches and I was not having any, they always used to eat out and I only sometimes used to have something to eat out. It’s not that my mother couldn’t afford these luxuries. But she strictly kept me out of all the cobwebs. Soon after I also realized the very necessity of such behaviour.

I now understand it is very hard not to provide things to your children even though you can afford those. It takes skin of rhinos to act like that. But those things are for the good of children only. These things teach about managing in the provided money, not spending unnecessarily on anything, setting priorities for going after things. In the future life these things help a lot. Because you are not likely to encounter very friendly life. So at one point or other you will have to come across harsher times. And this teaching helps in those times. In future you may have limited resources and have to prioritize things, and if you had very leisurely life and always got money as much and when needed, then you are mostly likely to fail the task of prioritizing.

The thing in question is money lending easily to children, and debit cards are the easiest way for that. Is it really necessary to provide your children with debit cards? Given the current conditions of theft and robbery, children will become easy targets. Extortion is now a days very common and by application of this thing it will surely rise. Plus we all know that while taking out money from ATM centers many people have encountered threats of somebody coming and by using gun or even a knife for that matter can get steal money from you. Even an adult can not protest this thing and how can a child protest against it? Have anybody thought of it?

We have seen the outcomes of providing mobiles to school and college going children so that they can be constantly under watch. There are more misuses than uses of such things. Now a days children have started to bunk schools and colleges as no parent reaches out to teacher and ask about their child, because they can easily call their child and ask whether he/she is in college/school or not. And cases of lying have increased reasonably after the provision of mobile phones. Similar things may happen with debit cards also. There are more misuses rather than uses.

So it is up to parents whether they wan to spoil their child or not. It is up to them only whether to provide such things and face the consequences of it or not. Is it really that necessary? I have also lived my childhood, and I don’t feel any need of having such things. Conditions have changed now, agreed, but instead of providing 10 Rs (as we used to get) provide 50 Rs or 100 Rs for that matter.

Think over this and act. But if anybody asks me, my answer will be a big NO. There is NO need to provide debit cards to children.

Prasad B. Kulkarni

Navi Mumbai.