Masala Podcast – S 2, Ep 7 – HIV in South Asian Culture

Masala Podcast
Masala Podcast
Masala Podcast - S 2, Ep 7 - HIV in South Asian Culture

“Three-quarters of women with HIV in the UK are BAME…”

In episode seven, I talk to Dr Rageshri Dhairyawan, an NHS Consultant who’s also a Sexual Health & HIV activist, working primarily among South Asian womxn. Many of whom have contracted the virus through their husbands, but are unable to tell anyone because of the stigma around HIV.

Plus an interview with Mina Kakaiya, who’s had HIV for 20 years and is now an activist working to help other South Asian womxn tackle the stigma associated with HIV.

Both Rageshri & Mina who have such passion and compassion in their work, help us look at HIV in a totally different way.

We explore:

• The shame and secrecy that surround HIV in South Asian culture

• How stigma prevents South Asian womxn with HIV seeking support

• How shame is such a huge part of South Asian culture


Dr Rageshri Dhairyawan is a Consultant in Sexual Health and HIV at Barts Health NHS Trust and an Honorary Senior Lecturer at Queen Mary University of London. Her clinical work, teaching and research focuses on health inequalities, especially on the intersections between health, race and gender. She is an elected trustee of the British HIV Association, medical board member of NAZ, a charity specialising in the sexual health of minority ethnic communities and has recently joined the Race and Health collective. She has recently co-founded SAHAR, the South Asian HIV Advisory Resource and is passionate about reducing the stigma of talking about sex, sexuality and sexual health in South Asian communities in the UK.

Twitter: @crageshri

Insta: @crageshri

Mina Kakaiya is a social entrepreneur, speaker, author and wellbeing coach. She is a trainer in mental health, emotional resilience and mindfulness. And has been a volunteer peer mentor with Positively UK and informed national BHVIA HIV standards for Peer Support. She has also been involved in HIV campaigns and national and is an international speaker on HIV.

Twitter: @KakaiyaMina

LinkedIn: @mina-kakaiya

If you’ve been affected by the themes of this episode, please check out these resources:


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