Panaji: Goa`s Deputy Chief Minister Francis D`Souza Monday apologized for his comment that India was already a Hindu nation.
"My opinion could be wrong for others. I accept it. I don`t say it is the most correct opinion. You might say I am wrong. If anyone`s sentiment is hurt, I apologise," D`Souza said.
"Hindu is my culture, Christianity is my religion. When I say Hindu, it means culture and not religion. Hindu culture is 5,000 years old and my religion is 2,000 years old," D`Souza said.
D`Souza said Friday: "India is a Hindu country. It is Hindustan. All Indians in Hindustan are Hindus, including me, I am a Christian Hindu."
His comments triggered an uproar in the national media and on the political scene. The opposition asked the Goa Roman Catholic Church to excommunicate him for committing heresy.
D`Souza is one of the senior-most minority members of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in Goa and has been the party`s poster-boy as far as the Christian community is concerned.
Christians account for nearly 26 percent of the state`s population.