Dutch in Bengal

The VOC (Dutch East-Indian Company) administration in Bengal stretched from Balasore in Orissa (now Odisha) to Dhaka in Eastern Bengal. The Dutch started to explore the region in 1607, but only settled down in the late 1620s when they acquired a caul for a factory at Pipli from the local Faujdar in the name of the Nawab of Orissa. A few years later, the Dutch received a caul from the Mughal Subahdar of Bengal, later to be confirmed by an imperial farman , which led to the establishment of the factories in Hooghly (1635) and Patna in Bihar (1638).

After a temporary withdrawal to PIpli and Ballasore on the coast of Orissa, the Company returned to Bengal after 1645, reopening the factories in Hooghly and Patna. The Company also set up new ones in Cassimbazar, Dhaka and Udaiganj. Later the VOC established, often temporary stationsat  places such as  Khanakul, Malda, Baranagar, Rajmahal, Karimabad (in Murshidabad), Chhapra, Sherpur, Mirzapur, Hijili and Falta.

After about 1750 the trading activities of the VOC in Bengal came under the ever-tightening supervision of the British. As with many of their other South Asian establishments, the Dutch had to abandon their Bengal factories between 1781 and 1784, again between 1795 and 1817. This was as result of the various wars between the Dutch and the Brits. In 1825 the Dutch left India by exchanging the Chinsurah settlement with the British Benkulen in Indonesia.

The Dutch in Bengal maintained close relationship levels of the Mughal state: mainly the local authorities near the various factories or the increasingly autonomous provincial Subahdars based at Dhaka or Murshidabad. There were also occasional contacts with the Rajas of Burdwan and the Nawabs of Awadh.