They sold dreams, Sheila Dikshit said about Aam Admi Party, a day after Arvind Kejriwal's new party toppled her after three terms as Delhi chief minister.
She does not know what explains the AAP phenomenon which won it 28 seats to Congress' eight in 70-member Delhi Assembly where BJP emerged as the single largest party with 31 seats but five short of required majority.
Perhaps on second thoughts, the Congress veteran went on to remark, "I think it is just the dreams that they spun."
She had seen governance for 15 long years as chief minister. "You cannot make dreams. You cannot sell dreams. But they have".
Would the AAP phenomenon last? "No, they might once. But it does not mean it is going to be there for ever. The dream has to be also tested," she told PTI.
For instance, AAP had promised a 50 per cent reduction in power tariff in Delhi while BJP had promised a 30 per cent slash. AAP had come up with the idea of holding assembly session at the Ramlila ground where the Lokpal bill would be passed, she said.
Dikshit said she had explained hundreds of times that her government was not corrupt and also that electricity charges were decided by power regulator DERC.
But people have not understood that. Moreover, there was double anti-incumbency – that of the central government as well as Delhi government, Dikshit said.
Asked how the Congress party could be transformed ahead of the 2014 Lok Sabha polls as promised by Rahul Gandhi on Sunday, she said, the party needs to have workers who are more committed.
Dikshit said Kejriwal had "paid workers". Was that the future?, she asked, adding that Congress would have to look at all options.
She posed the question: "Have the days of just being committed to a party and its ideology gone or are they still there? These are questions we have to answer and we have to look for answers."