In the short story, we follow Sir Mohan Lal, who is a rich Indian man. He works as a lawyer and has embraced all the British norms and values. He is sitting on a train on his way to a conference.
He sits in first-class while his wife sits in the middle class. He doesn’t want to sit with her as she’s an ordinary Indian. Two soldiers arrive on the train and Sir Mohan Lal invites them up to first class.
A summary of the short story:
A characterization of Sir Mohan Lal:
Sir Mohan Lal seems to identify more with the British rulers than with his own people. He has acquired the manners and attitudes of the upper classes from the time he was studying abroad.
He tries to act British by reading The Times while he’s sitting in first class on the train. “He would fold it in a way in which the name of the paper was visible to others while he did the crossword puzzle, page 3 line 20“.