EastEnders signs UK Taekwondo champion Gurlaine Kaur Garcha to play Iqra’s girlfriend Ash


EASTENDERS has signed former UK Taekwondo champion Gurlaine Kaur Gaucha to play Iqra Ahmed’s girlfriend Ash.

The former UK number one will arrive in Walford later this month when Iqra decides to come out to her grandparents in emotional scenes.

Gurlaine Kaur Garcha will join EastEnders as Iqra’s girlfriend Ash

After recently coming out to her sister Habiba, Iqra decides it’s time to tell her grandparents the truth about who she is and why she decided to end her engagement to a man.

As she prepares to drop the bombshell, Ash arrives for moral support and despite being wracked with nerves, Iqra proudly announces that Ash is her girlfriend to her family.

It is not yet known how Mariam and Arshad will react to the news.

The actress has previously appeared in Holby City and Doctors in 2012 and for two years worked as a researcher on The Graham Norton Show.

Ash will arrive in Walford to help Iqra come out to her family

She also appeared on The Alan Titchmarsh Show to teach the gardener turned television presenter some self-defence moves alongside Olympian Louis Smith.

Gurlaine’s first appearance in EastEnders is on Thursday 29th August.

Iqra’s coming out story, which was exclusively revealed by The Sun, has been widely praised by fans for showing a modern-day Muslim LGBT+ love story.

She was recently seen being blackmailed by dentist Adam for her secret, but decided to come out to her sister Habeeba who was nothing but supportive of her.


Iqra is the show’s first Muslim lesbian character, though the soap did previously have her cousin, Syed Masood come out as gay in a storyline in 2009.

* EastEnders airs Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday evenings on BBC One

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