EastEnders casts Balvinder Sopal as Suki Panesar

The former Coronation Street star will play the Panesar family matriarch - but what is she hiding?

eastenders suki panesar

There’s a new face coming to Albert Square in the new year, with actress Balvindar Sopal set to join the cast of EastEnders as Suki Panesar in episodes airing from January.

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Sopal, who has previously appeared in Coronation Street as PC Marks as well as other series including Hollyoaks, Call the Midwife and Waterloo Road, will join the recently-arrived Panesar family as matriarch Suki, the mother of Kheerat, Jags, Vinny and Ash who is “set to cause chaos” according to the BBC.

“I grew up watching EastEnders religiously so to be joining the show and playing matriarch Suki Panesar is a dream come true – I am still pinching myself!” Sopal said in a release.

“I’m excited to see what’s in store for Suki as she joins her family on Albert Square.”

“It has been clear since their arrival that the Panesar siblings live under the shadow of an overbearing matriarch and in January, Suki Panesar arrives in Walford, determined to make her presence felt,” EastEnders executive producer Jon Sen said.

“Balvinder brings a unique blend of steeliness and charm to the role and I can’t wait to see her grace our screens in January.”

According to the release, Suki’s torrid relationship with her daughter Ash will be a central part of the family’s new storylines, as well as “a number of secrets from her past” that may come to light sooner rather than later.

“Suki thrives off attention, is fiercely protective of her family and has an ability to draw people in,” the release adds.

“However, Walford residents should not be fooled by her larger than life persona because Suki always knows best and she is not one to be reckoned with. “

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Sounds like she’ll fit right in…