Coronation Street to introduce its first ever Muslim family
13 JANUARY 2014Coronation Street is introducing a Muslim family to the soap – the first ever in its 53 years on air.
Relatives of the new character Khalid "Kal" Nasir, played by East is East star Jimi Mistry, will be brought into the show in a move that is long overdue, according to the ITV hit show's producer, Stuart Blackburn.
"Kal and his son and daughter live with his mum and dad so we’re going to bring them on to the Street," he said.
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"And that'll be the first Muslim family that Corrie's ever had. Bizarre isn't it?"
The addition of a Muslim-faith family comes as the multi-cultural make-up of Manchester has reached nearly one in six residents being Muslim, according to data from the 2011 census.
The Nazir family will include Kal's mother, father – to be played by ex-Emmerdale actor Marc Anwar – and two children who are yet to be cast.
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Jimi made his Corrie debut as Kal in November last year playing a personal trainer.
He is already well known for appearing in EastEnders, starring in comedy film East is East, as well as for competing in Strictly Come Dancing back in 2010.
The handsome actor, who was born to an Irish mother and Indian father and was brought up a Roman Catholic, later went on to get engaged to his dance partner Flavia Cacace. The happy couple tied the knot in a romantic Christmas ceremony in December.
Experts have been consulted and "All aspects of their lifestyle, culture and religion has been researched" to ensure the show accurately reflects the Muslim faith.