A day after reports said that the police in Uttar Pradesh had detained four donkeys for four days and then released them, the state police department has denied it.

“Uttar Pradesh Police has nothing to do with their arrest or custody,” the department said in a tweet on Tuesday.

On Monday, reports had said that the animals were detained at the Urai district jail complex for four days for eating expensive plants in the facility.

The animals were held after their owner, Kamlesh, let them loose despite being warned that a senior officer was planning to plant some expensive plants, RK Mishra, the head constable at Urai jail, had told ANI. The plants were reportedly worth Rs 5 lakh.

After the police denied Kamlesh’s request to free the animals, he had sought local Bharatiya Janata Party leader Shakti Gahoi’s help, reported India Today. Gahoi had then gone to the police along with Kamlesh and persuaded them to let the animals go.

“The animals not only ate plants, they ruined the entire garden and injured the children of the colony,” Jail Superintendent Sitaram Sharma told PTI. “We called the owners several times, and each time, they said the animals didn’t belong to them.”

Another jail official said that they had made “all arrangements” for the donkeys and had even fed them two times a day.