But Kim did not suspect that Mahbub Ali, known as one of the best
horse-dealers in the Punjab, a wealthy and enterprising trader, whose
caravans penetrated far and far into the Back of Beyond, was registered
in one of the locked books of the Indian Survey Department as C25 IB.
Twice or thrice yearly C25 would send in a little story, baldly told
but most interesting, and generally -- it was checked by the statements
of R17 and M4 -- quite true. It concerned all manner of out-of-the-way
mountain principalities, explorers of nationalities other than English,
and the guntrade -- was, in brief, a small portion of that vast mass of
'information received' on which the Indian Government acts.