The explosion took place at the Tabian Farhang centre in Mazar-i-Sharif, the capital of the province, as journalists gathered for the award event on Saturday, said Mohammad Asif Waziri, the Taliban-appointed spokesman for Balkh police.
“A blast has taken placed in the second police district of Balkh,” he continued.
Waziri confirmed the casualty toll, adding that three children were among the injured.
The incident came two days after a bomb in Mazar-i-Sharif killed the provincial governor, Daud Muzmal, and two others. Four were wounded.
No one has immediately claimed responsibility for the attack, but the regional affiliate of the Daesh group is a key rival of the Taliban.
The group has increased its attacks in Afghanistan since the Taliban takeover of the country in August 2021. Targets have included Taliban patrols and members of Afghanistan’s Shia minority.