Noting that India is not mere territory but its people and their relationships, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Wednesday said it is his duty and commitment to building bridges between the people of India.
Speaking at an event in Mallapuram, the Congress leader also said that the political question being asked today is - what is India?
He attacked the BJP-led government and accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi of "breaking relationships" between people.
"The political question being asked today is - what is India? If you read people like Savarkar, they'll say India is geography. They take a pen, draw a map & say this is India; outside this line it is not India and inside this line it is India," he said.
"Then a question arises, what if there was this map but no people living on this territory. Would you still be here? Of course not because if there would be no people in this territory you would not say that it is India," he added.
He said India is defined by relationships between people across communities, languages and states.
"They say India is a territory, we say India is people, relationships. It's the relationship between Hindu and Muslim, between Hindu, Muslim and Sikh, between Tamil, Hindi, Urdu, Bengali. My problem with PM is that he's breaking these relationships," he said.
"If he is breaking the relationships between Indians, he is attacking the idea of India. That is why I oppose him. And in the same way, he breaks the relationships between Indians, it is my job, my duty and my commitment to building the bridge between the people of India," he added.
Gandhi said there is a need to understanding different traditions, ideas, different religions, different cultures.
"Every time he uses hatred to break a bridge between two Indians, my job is to use love to rebuild that bridge and not just my job but our job. I can't build a bridge without understanding different traditions, ideas, different religions, different cultures in this country," he said.
"What happens if an Indian person gets on a plane and goes to America, does he not remain Indian? Of course, he doesn't, he remains an Indian. So for me, India is the people who live here," he added.