DESI LESBIANS: Meet the panellists, DJ Ritu (Club Kali) / by Tiger Iron

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Desi Lesbians, taking place Sunday 25th February at the Ritzy Picturehouse, explores the reasons behind the lack of visible, out, lesbian and bi South Asian women.

In the fourth of our multi-part series, we introduce panellist DJ Ritu, co-found of Club Kali


For those that don't know you, could you please introduce yourself? 

I’m DJ Ritu – my DJ career began 32 years ago at the London Lesbian and Gay Centre in Farringdon. I started out as a pop music specialist but gradually got propelled into South Asian and ‘world’ sounds. I’m London born and bred, and went to my first Pride march in 1985. Thereafter, I became one of the founders of Shakti, and went on to create Club Kali (1995).

For many years my ‘real’ job was as a youth centre manager in Haringey, but much of my ‘working’ life is centred around the music industry – I began broadcasting for the BBC in 1991, co-founded Outcaste Records in 1994, and toured a large proportion of the world with my bands Sister India and The Asian Equation. Currently, I present a radio show called A World in London, manage two club nights, and do various other music-related bits and pieces!

What led you to start Club Kali?

I wanted to create a safe and welcoming community space for LGBTQ people, which championed music from South Asia.

Why is Desi Lesbians an important event for you to be a part of?

Because Desi Lesbians are important! We’re often overlooked, misunderstood, or misrepresented. There is always room for more visibility, and more opportunities to come together and talk/support each other.

Meet DJ Ritu, and join us for an evening of female-led films, thought-provoking discussion, drinks and DJ sets. The panel is hosted by Reeta Loi, co-founder of Gaysians.

Tickets are limited. Learn more and book tickets now.