In a heavy 3-quart saucepan, place vegetable oil, bay leaf, and onions. Sauté onions until golden.
Add ginger, sauté for 1 minute, and then add all dry spices. Add tomato after 1 minute.
Remove cardamom seeds from pods and crush on a flat surface. Stir cardamom and remaining spices into onions and tomatoes. Cook over low heat for 2 to 3 minutes.
Add chickpeas and continue cooking until chickpeas are hot, stirring occasionally.
Stir in lemon juice just before serving. Garnish with chopped tomato and fresh coriander or parsley leaves.