Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday talked about how his government had rescued people of other faiths, including Christians, pointing out that humanity was one of the values of nationalists, The Indian Express reported.

He made the statement in reference to a letter written by the Archbishop of the Archdiocese of Gandhinagar Thomas Macwan. He had appealed to the clergy for prayers to save the country from nationalist forces as the “secular and democratic fabric of our country is at stake”.

“I was shocked to see a religious person releasing a ‘fatwa’, asking for nationalist forces to be uprooted,” Modi said after inaugurating a hospital in Ahmedabad. “It is rashtrabhakti [nationalism] that guides us to help every Indian in any part of the world.”

The prime minister said it was a “matter of concern” that some people are opposing such values, PTI reported. He reiterated that the government had rescued a number of foreigners along with Indians, including those stranded in conflict zones.

“Our nurses from Kerala, mostly Christians, were stranded in Iraq,” Modi said. “They were in the custody of terrorists. Can the prime minister or any citizen of India sleep in such situation, when our daughters are in custody of terrorists?”

Father Tom Uzhunnalil, the Catholic priest from Kerala who was kidnapped by the Islamic State group in Yemen in March 2016, was rescued in September.