Earlier this year it was confirmed that Nitin Ganatra will be reprising his role of Masood Ahmed in BBC One soap EastEnders, just one year after he quit the show and his much-loved character left Albert Square for Pakistan.
Now fans have been offered a first look at Masood’s new family, with it previously being announced that Masood will not be returning with his ex-wife, Zainab, or any of their children, Syed, Shabnam, Tamwar, and Kamil.
Masood’s Auntie Mariam and Uncle Arshad are the first of Masood’s new relatives to be introduced to Walford, with the characters said to have lived in London for most of their lives, moving into Albert Square when they decide to rent Masood’s house.
Bigger than their current home, the move to the E20 will allow Mariam and Arshad to continue fostering, with the two played by actors Indira Joshi and Madhav Sharma.
Arshad is described as “jovial and mischievous” whereas Mariam is “no-nonsense” but has a “gentle attitude and kind soul”.
A source previously told The Sun: “The extended family who are joining him have yet to be cast but bosses certainly want Masood to be one of the soap’s central characters once again.”
Speaking about his impending return, Nitin shared at the time: “When I was told Masood still has much to give to the show and is missed by the audience, it was hard to refuse.”
Masood first arrived in Albert Square in 2007, with the postman being involved in a number of high-profile storylines, including the return of his wife Zainab’s abusive ex-husband Yusef, his son Syed’s affair with Christian Clarke, and his daughter Shabnam’s stillbirth.
He left Walford last year with youngest son Kamil, with the pair flying to Pakistan in a bid to reunite with Zainab, who left the show in 2013.