At least 15 people have died in an explosion in an illegal gambling den in Karachi, Pakistan, according to reports.

About three dozen other people were wounded in a blast that was set off by a bomb in the Lyari neighborhood, in the poor southern part of the city.

The number of casualties is likely to rise.

It was a home-made bomb placed in a packet inside the club, senior government official Sharfuddin Memon told Agence France Presse.

Gambling, which is illegal in Pakistan, is run by criminal gangs and there is reportedly a vast underground market for sports betting and lottery games.

BBC reported that Karachi officials believe the bombing was the work of rival criminal gang, and now related to political terrorism.

The attack appears to be linked to the turf war that has been going on for some time and was also alleged to be a gambling den,” a correspondent for Al Jazeera said.

According to some estimates, up to 300 people were at the location at the time of the explosion.