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FILE PHOTO: M. Karunanidhi, Chief Minister of the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu and leader of Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) party, speaks during a meeting at party headquarters in Chennai March 8, 2011. REUTERS/Babu

(reuters_tickers)

(Reuters) - M. Karunanidhi, five-time chief minister of India's southern Tamil Nadu state and a lifelong campaigner for social equality, died on Tuesday at the age of 94, hospital authorities said.

Karunanidhi, who wrote scripts for Tamil cinema before entering politics, had been treated in hospital since July 26 for age-related ailments.

(Writing by Sudarshan Varadhan, Editing by William Maclean)

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Reuters