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‘EastEnders’ set for first lesbian Muslim character

Irqa Ahmed (Priya Davdra) will reportedly come out later this summer.

By Will Stroude

EastEnders is reportedly set for another groundbreaking LGBTQ storyline as it introduces its first lesbian Muslim character.

Irqa Ahmed (Priya Davdra), who has appeared on screens since February, is apparently set to come out later this summer in a vital new storyline.

Viewers of the BBC One soap have seen the restauranteur hiding a series of mysterious text messages in recent weeks, and it will soon emerge that she has been exchanging romantic messages with women, The Sun reports.

A source told the paper: “Iqra has been fighting to keep her sexuality quiet, but eventually the truth will emerge.”

Irqa was introduced on EastEnders earlier this year as the niece of Masoon Ahmed (Nitin Ganatra), who was involved in another high-profile LGBTQ storyline when his son Syed (Marc Elliott) fell in love with Christian Clarke (John Partridge) almost a decade ago.

News of Irqa’s coming out comes as EastEnders continues to raise the bar for LGBTQ visibility in British soaps, with recent storylines including a Pride parade in the fictional east London borough of Walford and Kathy Beale (Gillian Taylforth) opening a gay bar, the approprately-named The Prince Albert, last month.

It also comes as protests by mainly Muslim parents against LGBTQ-inclusive education outside a handful of schools in Birmingham and across the country on ‘religious grounds’ continue to highlight the need for better Muslim LGBTQ visbility in Britain.

EastEnders continues on Thursday at 7.30pm on BBC One.