Ravi Gulati (Aaron Thiara) is set to get the mother of all shocks in EastEnders this autumn when his ex-girlfriend Priya arrives on his doorstep with his daughter Avani in tow.
The former couple’s split wasn’t under the best of circumstances and, since parting ways, Ravi has kept son Nugget (Juhaim Rasul Choudhury) away from Priya (Sophie Khan Levy).
It turns out, however, that Nugget wasn’t the only child they had together, with upcoming scenes seeing Ravi discover that he’s got a daughter named Avani, with Priya having decided not to inform him when she was pregnant.
Ravi has therefore missed out on the opportunity to watch Avani grow up, with the fallout of this revelation knocking him for six and sending shockwaves through his world.
Consider us very excited for what’s to come.
Priya Nandra-Hart will be portrayed by Sophie Khan Levy, who worked on TV dramas including The Sixth Commandment and All Creatures Great and Small, while rising star Aaliyah James will play the role of Avani.
‘I’m super excited to be joining the show, and I can’t wait to see what trouble Priya gets herself into!,’ said Sophie upon news of her casting. ‘I watched EastEnders when I was growing up, so to see so many familiar faces and to walk onto the set is a dream come true.’
Aaliyah, meanwhile, added: ‘To be given this opportunity as my official debut to screen is a true blessing. I have found home in the supportiveness of the cast and crew, and I’m very thankful to feel a part of the EastEnders family already.
‘I can’t wait to bring Avani to life and to walk her path in Walford, and I’m excited to see what the universe has planned for my own future.’
Discussing the duo’s upcoming arrival, EastEnders boss Chris Clenshaw said: ‘We’re excited to introduce Priya and Avani, two women guaranteed to cause big drama in Albert Square.
‘Little is known about Ravi and Priya’s doomed romance, but she’s a big missing piece in his past.
‘The revelation that he’s got another child will floor Ravi, and he is set to face a big challenge in his life when he is forced to cope with such a big shock to the system. We’re delighted to welcome Sophie and Aaliyah to the EastEnders family.’
Nugget, as viewers know, isn’t on the best of terms with Ravi at the moment, following the revelation that he killed Ranveer, who Nugget was very fond of, and covered up his murder.
The teen subsequently fled the Square, with Ravi left a shell of his former self as he desperately tries to work out where his son has vanished to.
EastEnders airs Mondays to Thursdays at 7:30pm on BBC One and BBC iPlayer.
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