This group is constituted by the small, unprotected tenants who often cultivate the land as sharecroppers. The economic situation of this group has always been hard.The small areas they leased did not allow them to economically utilize their labour, and the landlords' propensity to allow only easily controllable crops to be cultivated prevented them growing vegetables and other intensive crops. The underemployment rate was high, but, often, they were not allowed to take up other occupations in case they could find any. Many of these tenants were indebted and, thus, even more dependent.

The Green Revolution brought about radical changes for this group. At first, it had no share in the revolution. The landlords utilized the new seed on self cultivated land. As the construction of wells and the acquisition of tractors progressed, many of the landlords went over to owner cultivation and dismissed the tenants. Growing unrest among the tenants on account of the attempts at changing the sharecropping conditions, but also the fact that the tenants' draught oxen were no longer needed were the reasons why within a few years, the contracts of a large number of these tenants were not renewed, and the sharecropping system was almost abolished in large regions. In India's Punjab alone, the number of tenants decreased from 583,000 to 80,500 between 1955 and 1969.

Some of the evicted tenants succeeded in finding employment as agricultural labourers, but, for the majority, work was only available at harvest time. If, in spite of this, the evicted tenants did not become paupers, this can be largely attributed to the fact that they kept animals. All of them owned a pair of oxen which they could no longer use, but which could be sold at high prices. They exchanged these for a pair of buffalo cows which were fed on fodder collected by the family or given by a farmer when they worked for him. It has always been a traditional rule of thumb that whoever owns two buffalo cows earns, by selling calves, milk, or ghee, the equivalent of a casual labourer's income. Their subsistence was thus ensured, and, besides, they could offer their labour and earn an income. Growing trade and increase in transport and marketing often allowed them to find work. The fact that what they earned from selling milk ensured their livelihood allowed them to be particular when accepting a work. The mass of tenants thus did not directly participate in the Green Revolution, but the radical changes this group experienced have not led to the expected misery.