Judging from the recent picture of Pervez Musharraf taken in Dubai during the Pakistan-India Asia Cup match – where he was seen dressed in a sharp blue blazer and sporting a cigar and sunglasses – one would have been forgiven for assuming that the former Chief of Army Staff was hale and hearty. After all, sitting through an 8-hour One Day International (ODI), that too in the stifling Dubai heat, is a gruelling task.

However, according to All Pakistan Muslim League (APML) leader Dr Mohammad Amjad, Pervez Musharraf is suffering from an unmentioned disease for which he is undergoing treatment that requires him to visit London after every three months. The reason for making this announcement is, of course, to claim that the former dictator cannot return to Pakistan to face his trial for treason. Dr Amjad has said that the medical documents will be submitted to the Supreme Court in due course and expects “to get justice” from the apex court.

While Dr Amjad hopes for relief, he may find that the apex court might not be in such a compromising mood. In recent times the Chief Justice of Pakistan, Justice Saqib Nisar has cut short several “medical relief” orders given to prominent accused individuals claiming they were healthy enough to face judicial proceedings or that their medical conditions were not serious enough.

Most recently, Omni Group chairman Anwar Majeed, his son Abdul Ghani Majeed and former Pakistan Stock Exchange chairman Hussain Lawai were shifted to jail based on their medical reports. Sharjeel Memon was shifted to jail simply because contraband was discovered from his hospital room and separately, Nawaz Sharif’s stay in Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences (PIMS) also proved short lived.

It remains to be seen if the reasons given by the former general – needing to visit London after three months – will face the same strict standard that the SC has applied to previous cases. Or, will he be judged with a more lenient, special standard.