Jatinder Singh
Humans of Woodlea

Jatinder Singh

From India to Entrepreneurial Restaurant Owner: How Jatinder Became a Community Treasure

What serves to set Jatinder apart is his unfaltering dedication to creating a cultural family — weaving a sense of community into the fabric of every project he handles.


After stepping foot on Australian soil for the first time in 2006, Jatinder was keen to make his mark on Melbourne’s Indian cuisine scene. Six months slogging away in a Pakistani restaurant in Clayton afforded him the clarity of thought to make some vital decisions — Jatinder wanted to build such an establishment himself.


Jatinder made a name for himself initially with a Box Hill Bollywood-themed restaurant that he purchased in 2006. After the success of his first project, he bought an Indian takeaway restaurant in Bourke Street — he had already laid the groundwork for an Indian cuisine empire, with the purchase of two businesses within six months of leaving his job.


Despite his enterprising expertise driving Jatinder’s success ladder ascent, the desire to instill a sense of community spirit still stands as the main focus of his achievements.

“Growing up in India taught me the true value of a supportive and harmonious community culture. I’d like to think this is something my family and I brought with us when we migrated to Australia. I work extremely hard each day to formulate communities at work and in my local area, in order to do justice to such values,” explained Jatinder.


Due to his insatiable yearning to build a family from a network of friends, coupled with his appreciation of the diversity of cultures abundant in Australia, Jatinder was appointed the role of Vice President of the Australian Multicultural Society (AMS) — another testament to his keen ability to emanate approachability.


“I participated in an AMS event a while ago, and I couldn’t get enough of what they were doing, I had to be involved! Since then I have developed so much as a community organiser, it’s been a fantastic mutual relationship,” said Jatinder.


Now a fundamental building block of not only his geographical community but also the growing Indian community and the AMA programme, Jatinder has established himself as a vital community member.

“Australia has given myself and my family so much, I really just wanted to share a little of that love back. It’s important to me to support those not just from my own culture, but everyone who needs a friend,” says Jatinder.


“My boys aren’t much into the family business. They’re working towards white collar careers, and I want them to do whatever they like. 


“However, it’s very important to us that they are familiar with Indian culture and food, and are viscerally aware of their heritage. Out of three meals a day, at least one of them will be Indian food. Sometimes, if we’re lucky, they even cook for us!”


After selling a few of his restaurants and making a few mistakes along the way (don’t ask about the charcoal chicken shop), Jatinder is completely invested in what he does, and feels that making delicate Indian dishes and feeding people is one of the purest ways to show that you care. He is now involved in catering for events such as the annual Christmas party, while also sponsoring various initiatives organised by his local community, Woodlea.


Jatinder’s story is part of Humans of Woodlea, an initiative by the fully integrated master planned community that seeks to highlight the unique stories of its residents, whilst showcasing its diversity and spirit.