Cindy Beale (Michelle Collins) stood up to nasty Nish Panesar (Navin Chowdhry) in tonight's EastEnders (6th September) as she sought to rebuild her life in Walford.


With Cindy desperate to put down roots so she could prove herself to estranged daughters Gina (Francesca Henry) and Anna Knight (Molly Rainford), her partner Ian (Adam Woodyatt) set up a business lunch with Nish and his wife Suki (Balvinder Sopal), cooking a number of courses for them to taste.

While son Peter (Thomas Law) bonded with Gina and Anna, Ian turned on the charm, suited and booted and back to the Ian we remember, as he presented his business plan to Nish. Nish remained ice cool throughout, quizzing Ian on Cindy's whereabouts.

Cindy was in fact checking out potential business premises; but as Ian bragged about his experience and promised a hefty profit for Nish, Suki reminded Ian of the time he humiliated her over their last business deal.

Branding Ian a "weasel", Suki urged Nish not to trust him, and the couple walked out. When Cindy returned to the house, thrilled to have found some suitable premises for their business, Ian revealed that the Panesars had been and gone, with no intention of signing a deal.

Cindy stormed off to see Nish, who was full of jibes about Ian's behaviour. But Cindy soon turned the tables on Nish, insisting that it was he who needed the Beales on board, otherwise they would be running a business in direct competition with Nish.

Pointing out that Ian had an impressive reputation career-wise (are you sure about that, Cindy?) and that she had negotiated a great deal on the lease, Cindy added that they would be going ahead with or without Nish's backing.

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Nish was visibly impressed by Cindy, but will he have a change of heart? You'll just have to keep watching to find out, but while you wait, let's delve into the history between bitter Suki and Ian...

What happened between Ian Beale and Suki Panesar?

Adam Woodyatt as Ian Beale, Navin Chowdhry as Nish Panesar, and Balvinder Sopal as Suki Kaur Panesar in EastEnders.
Adam Woodyatt as Ian Beale, Navin Chowdhry as Nish Panesar, and Balvinder Sopal as Suki Kaur Panesar in EastEnders. BBC/Jack Barnes/Kieron McCarron

Back in 2020, Ian was making enemies everywhere, from half-brother Ben Mitchell (Max Bowden), to best friend and eventual wife Sharon Watts (Letitia Dean) – and Suki was another character who had cause to hate him.

When Suki offered Ian a bribe to secure a property development through his role within the council, Ian told a journalist all about Suki's ill-advised actions.

Fuming to be faced with the reporter's questions, Suki managed to send the man packing. But she was rattled, and confronted Ian with a fierce threat about going against her. Soon after, Ian was attacked, and Suki was one of the suspects.

Of course, viewers know that it was actually Phil Mitchell (Steve McFadden) who inflicted violence on Ian, out of loyalty to Sharon and revenge over Ian's role in her late son Denny's (Bleu Landau) death.

So, Suki was confirmed to be in the clear at the time. But given that Nish is a whole new level of dangerous, could Ian come to regret pursuing this family as a business backer?

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EastEnders airs Mondays to Thursdays at 7:30pm on BBC One and from 6am on BBC iPlayer. Visit our dedicated EastEnders page for all the latest news, interviews and spoilers. If you’re looking for more to watch, check out our TV Guide and Streaming Guide.


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