India is already a Hindu nation and "all Indians in Hindustan are Hindus", Deputy Chief Minister Francis D'Souza said Friday.
Defending the comments of his cabinet colleague Deepak Dhavalikar who said that Modi could make the country a 'Hindu nation', Francis D'Souza told reporters: "It was always a Hindu nation and will always be a Hindu nation. You don't have to create a Hindu nation."
D'Souza, one of the seniormost minority members of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in Goa, said that he considered himself a "Christian Hindu".
"India is a Hindu country. It is Hindustan. All Indians in Hindustan are Hindus, including I - I am a Christian Hindu," D'Souza said.
Dhavalikar triggered a national controversy Thursday while speaking during a motion congratulating Narendra Modi on becoming prime minister.
"If we all support it and we stand by Narendra Modi systematically, then I feel a Hindu Rashtra will be established," Dhavalikar said.
D'Souza insisted that Dhavalikar had no "clarity in his mind" because India was already a Hindu nation.