This article presents a macro-national perspective of gender equality in employment in two Muslim majority countries, Turkey and Pakistan. The article examines and compares the institutional implications of secularism and Islamic shariah for gender equality in employment in the two countries. Drawing on case studies of a selection of influential public and private sector organizations engaged in promoting and implementing gender equality in Turkey and Pakistan, the article argues that secularism and shariah as dominant ideologies present poor agendas for gender equality. Indeed, secularism and shariah hijack gender equality discourses paying only partial lip service to genuine demands for equality. The article argues that there is a need to rescue gender equality from the clasp of ideology and bring in genuine processes of equal opportunity and social justice in the workplace.