After rain delayed the start of play by three hours, India looked to have gained the psychological edge when they captured England's last six wickets for just 26 runs to dismiss the home side for 298.
But India also found the conditions difficult to handle.
Opener Dinesh Karthik was lbw for five to an in-swinger from left-armer Ryan Sidebottom and then skipper Rahul Dravid edged an out-swinger from James Anderson to the wicketkeeper Matt Prior for two.
Wasim Jaffer was on 21 and Sachin Tendulkar was batting on four.
The situation would have been far worse for the tourists had Prior held on to a straightforward catch offered by Jaffer off Sidebottom before he had scored. The wickets sullied what had otherwise been an excellent day for them.
England were in control at 218 for one on Thursday when Andrew Strauss (96) and Michael Vaughan (79) were going strong, but the weather delays clearly upset their momentum.
Resuming on 268 for four, night-watchman Sidebottom fell first to Rudra Pratap Singh for one.
The second wicket of the day was the one that really boosted India as Kevin Pietersen only added three more runs on Friday before falling for 37.
Pietersen received a reprieve when wicketkeeper Mahendra Singh Dhoni claimed a catch that was shown to have bounced but offered another chance just moments later to Dhoni from the bowling of Zaheer Khan.
Shanthakumaran Sreesanth added to England's misery by trapping three tail-enders lbw to finish with three for 67.
Eight wickets have so far fallen in the day for 66 runs.
India are seeking to win their first Test series in England since 1986.
Brief Scores (at tea, D-2):
England Ist innings 298 (Strauss 96, Vaughan 79, Pietersen 37, Cook 36, Bell 20; Sreesanth 3 for 67, Zaheer 2 for 62, R P Singh 2 for 58) Vs India Ist innings 36 for 2 (Jaffer 21 n o, Tendulkar 4 n o; Anderson 1 for 11, Sidebottom 1 for 21).