Suspended Janata Dal (United) MLA Sarfaraz Alam on Saturday resigned from the party and Bihar Assembly to join Lalu Prasad Yadav’s (pictured above) Rashtriya Janata Dal. “Ever since the JD(U) betrayed the secular forces, I have been under pressure from my voters and my mother that I join the party to which my father belonged,” he said, according to PTI.

This comes a day after the Election Commission announced the dates for the bye-poll in Bihar’s Araria, which fell vacant following the death of RJD MP and Alam’s father Mohammed Taslimuddin. The Araria bye-poll will be held on March 11, and votes will be counted on March 14.

Asked whether he has been promised a ticket by the RJD from Araria, Alam said “the decision shall be taken by the party”. The bye-poll will be crucial to determine RJD chief Lalu Prasad Yadav’s popularity following his conviction in the fodder scam cases.

Alam accused Chief Minister Nitish Kumar of “betraying secular forces” by joining hands with the Bharatiya Janata Party. “I had joined the JD(U) as it was then a part of the Grand Alliance which represented secular forces,” he added. Alam was suspended from the JD(U) after he allegedly misbehaved with a woman on a train.

RJD National Vice President Shivanand Tiwary said it “marks a growing discontentment with Nitish Kumar’s capitulation before the BJP”. He added that more such developments are on the cards.