Actor Marc Anwar is to make his Coronation Street debut next week as Sharif Nazir, the father of fitness instructor Kal (Jimi Mistry).
Anwar – who previously played Dr Ajit Devgan in Emmerdale – will appear for the first time in Weatherfield during scenes to be shown on Monday 24 February.
The upcoming storyline will see Kal tell his friend and business partner Dev (Jimmi Harkishin) that he has had to borrow money from his dad for the gym that they intend to open. Later, Kal will introduce Sharif to both Dev and Stella (Michelle Collins).
In the episodes that follow, Sharif will cause ructions when he tells Dev and Kal that he’s hiring a builder friend rather than using the services of local tradesman Jason (Ryan Thomas), whose prices he considers to be too high.
Coronation Street producer Stuart Blackburn revealed last month that Kal’s family were to be brought into the ITV soap in a move that would see the first Muslim family introduced to the show.
“We’ve already established that Kal’s son and daughter both live with Kal’s mum and dad, so we’re going to bring them onto the Street. It’ll be the first Muslim family that Corrie has ever had,” he said.
On the character of Sharif, Blackburn added: “He’s a man who retired some time ago after making enough money. You can imagine that he’s had some health problems and his wife has told him, ‘you’re not going to work for 12 hours a day any more, you blithering idiot’.”
Jimi Mistry’s character Kal made his debut back in December 2013 when it was quickly established that he was a widower wth two children. Speaking at the time, the former EastEnders star said: “He’s an alpha male – I think they were keen to bring in a strong male character. I like to think of him as someone who’s quite charming and inspiring, but you can tell there’s definitely another side to him. And this is what we’re going find out.”