Umichand a merchant of the nawabi period. He was one of the principal authors of the conspiracy leading to the battle of palashi. An upcountry merchant from Agra, Umichand came to Bengal in the second decade of the eighteenth century. One Bishnudas Seth, a dadni merchant and broker of Calcutta, arranged his passage to murshidabad. Later he established himself in Calcutta in the 1730s as a leading merchant. He was closely connected with the government of alivardi khan. As a merchant Umichand was mainly concerned with saltpetre and opium trade. For saltpetre he was a major contractor with the English company.
Umichand was very closely connected with the Murshidabad nobility bribing which he could establish monopoly control on the highly profitable saltpetre trade. Haji Ahmad, a brother of Alivardi Khan, stood his surety with the company as well as with the Murshidabad nawab. With his immense wealth and wide connections he could become a close confidant of Alivardi Khan and later of sirajuddaula.
In hatching the Palashi conspiracy the company made full use of Umichand's influence in Murshidabad Durbar. It was through him that the Murshidabad Durbar made their negotiations with the fort william authorities. Umichand first advanced Yar Latif Khan, a general, to the company as a replacement for Sirajuddaula. But his nomination was not considered and later william watts contacted mir jafar, to whom Umichand rendered his support.
Once the Palashi plot was fully made and waiting for implementation, Umichand demanded that he should receive for himself five percent on all the nawab's treasure, which was then believed to be to the tune of Rs 400 million, an exaggerated estimate, no doubt. In the officially signed document as to who gets what after the coup Umichand's name remained omitted on the ground that he ought to be specially rewarded. A separate treaty was drawn with him guaranteeing his five percent. But after the Palashi coup robert clive refused to give him the money saying that the agreement made with him was only a trick to keep 'the double agent' in good humour. The disclosure made Umichand fainted from which he recovered only to live a few years more as an imbecile. [Sirajul Islam]