Pop duo Milli Vanilli was stripped of its 1990 Grammy Award yesterday, the first time that the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences has taken back one of its coveted trophies.

Following the revelation last week that Rob Pilatus and Fabrice Morvan didn't sing a note on "Girl You Know It's True," the album credited to them as Milli Vanilli, the lip-sunk stars announced they would relinquish their Grammy for Best New Artist today.

But the academy beat them to it. Its 34-member board of trustees, contacted one at a time by phone, voted to rescind the award Milli Vanilli won in February. "The academy doesn't predicate its actions on the actions of other people," its president, Michael Greene, said yesterday, explaining the board's preemptive move.

Pilatus and Morvan still plan to hold a press conference this morning in Los Angeles. Their spokesman refused to comment yesterday on the academy's action.

"Girl You Know It's True" sold more than 7 million copies, and a collection of dance remixes sold nearly another million.

The academy will decide in the next two to three weeks whether the Grammy for Best New Artist of 1989 will be awarded to one of the runners-up (Neneh Cherry, the Indigo Girls, Soul II Soul or Tone Loc) or not at all, Greene said.

Marty Schwartz, for one, said yesterday, "Without a doubt, it should go to someone." He is Tone Loc's manager.

Pilatus and Morvan have said publicly that the Grammy should go to the studio singers who actually recorded "Girl You Know It's True," reportedly Johnny Davis, Charles Shaw and Brad Howell. But Greene said the entire enterprise was rendered "technically ineligible" because of the false crediting on the album. If the label had stated "that Rob and Fab and perhaps some other singers were part of Milli Vanilli,"things might be different, he said.

Frank Farian, the German producer who concocted Milli Vanilli, issued a statement yesterday through the group's U.S. distributor, Arista Records. "Initially, I felt {the Grammy} gave recognition to the entire Milli Vanilli team. This has not, however, been the case," he said. "By returning the Grammy, Rob and Fab can put this episode behind them and mark the beginning of a new career for themselves."

It was Farian who unveiled the sham last week, upset because Pilatus and Morvan were insisting that they be allowed to sing on the next Milli Vanilli album. Pilatus and Morvan now want to become recording artists in their own right, though even in concert the pair lip-synced to other singers' voices. Farian is planning to release a new album showcasing the original studio singers.

Greene said the Milli Vanilli case shouldn't sully the reputation of the Grammys, which the academy began awarding in 1958. "It's just embarrassing to have something like this happen," he said. "When you give 79 Grammys a year, you expect something strange to happen. And, well, it did."