Valley family living the American Dream

Davinder Singh, Kulwant Kaur and their son Iqbal Singh moved from India to California in 1997 to pursue the American dream.

"We miss our family over there, but life is better here," said Kaur. "Here, if you work hard you make a living. We're believers in the American dream."

The family just opened their second store in the Gardnerville Ranchos, JM Discount Liquor.

They opened their first store, JM Mini Market in Minden, in 2002.

"We were first in San Jose," said Iqbal Singh, who is now 20 and helps his parents with the business. "We moved here because it's less expensive and there is less crime."

The family has flourished in Douglas County. They rent space for the Minden store but had enough capital to buy property for their new store in the Ranchos.

"We have not had one citation," said Singh. "We have never sold alcohol to minors."

The Singhs are practicing Sikhs from Punjab in North India.

"Our religion teaches us to work hard, believe in God and be kind and respectful to others," said Kaur.

Unlike Hindu asceticism, Sikhism encourages its followers to work diligently and prosper in the world, without greed or malice.

"We are taught to make money honestly," said Kaur. "Honesty is important to us."

Another important aspect of their culture is family.

"We are family owned," said Iqbal Singh. "We do the work ourselves."

Singh will run the new Ranchos store, and his parents will stay at the Minden store. The family also plans on opening a gas station in the near future.

"We come from generations of good businessmen," said Davinder Singh.

JM Discount Liquor is located at 1294 Kimmerling Road and is open 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and 8 a.m. to midnight Friday and Saturday.

Information, 265-5410.

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